Archeologists and anthropologists have been trying to discover where the Ani-Tsalagi built mounds to protect their sacred item, their Atsila Galvkawetiyu. There was a simple reason for them to build their towns near rivers, for a source of ama, "water." Water is the source of life. Plus water in some cases is a sacred thing to the Ani-Tsalagi.
Are they from the Allegany Mountain region? Some have stories from the Iroquois people who say they drove their cousins south. Then why do the Ani-Tsalagi have such mounds as the Mound People. The Iroquois people do not. Is that because they have lived among the Algonkian for so many centuries? Linguists have decided that the Iroquois and Ani-Tsalagi separated about two thousand year ago. That being the case it would seem that the seven tribes of the Iroquois, the Huron, Erie, Tobacco, and Neutral, and a group that became to be known as Seneca, Cayuga, Onodaga, Oneida, and Mohawk, were driven out of the mountains. They were driven north to split the Northeast Alogonkian tribes. The Iroquois speaking Tuscarora joined the Leauge. Both sides of the Allegany Mountains were left for use by the Ani-Tsalagi, where they used the land of present day Kentucky as their private hunting grounds.
Others have claimed that the Ani-Tsalagi came from Mexico or Central America. This is because of the gorget that has been excavated at a site in Ani-Tsalagi territory. It had the markings of American Indian tribes out of that area. One thing that some people fail to remember is the history of the American Indain and his trading habits. Items of trade could be found that came from as far away as the Great Lakes, the Southwest, and many other parts of the Americas. All American Indian tribes were a trading people and they loved to trade their goods for those made by other tribes.
We may never know where they came from as an organized tribe. We do know that they have been in the Allegany Mountains, especially the Great Smokey Mountains, for many centuries. As far back as the late 1890s, James Mooney in his "Myths of the Cherokees and Sacred Formulas of the Cherokees," stated that our people covered 40,000 square miles that includes the present state of Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Alabama.
There are many stories of where the Ani-Tsalagi came from and how they came to the mountains. Most of those stories have no creditability.
Chief D. L. Hicks
Ugu (Head Chief)
[History Of The Ani-Tsalagi]
[First Town is Formed] [Building the Mound and Sacred Fire] [Forming Clans] [Family Dwellings] [Fields]
[Tribal Government] [Leaders] [Red and White Organizations] [The War Women] [Warriorship and War Titles]
[Diplomacy] [Immunity of Ambassadors] [Marriage and Divorce] [Tobacco Pipes] [The Ceremonial War Hatchet]
[Take Up The Hatchet] [Bury The Hatchet] [Traders and Merchants] [Craftsmen and Industrial Arts] [Games] [Taboo] [Burial]