Facts & Figures
Cherokee Fun Facts
Here's some fun facts about the Cherokee Indians in NC:
- There are more than 11,000 Cherokee in western North Carolina, including more than 7,000 on the reservation alone.
- The original name of the Cherokee is Ani-Yun-Wiya.
- Each Cherokee village had two chiefs; a “Red Chief” in the winter and a “White Chief” in the summer.
- Cherokee society is matrilineal; children are members of their mother’s clan.
- The first European to make contact with the Cherokee was probably Hernando De Soto, in 1540.
- During the Revolutionary War, the Cherokee fought on the side of the British.
- At the Battle of Horseshoe Bend in the War of 1812, the Cherokee fought on the side of Andrew Jackson. He later had them removed to Oklahoma in the “Trail of Tears.”
- In 1829, the Cherokee nation was endangered by the discovery of gold in northern Georgia.
- The Qualla Boundary was assembled with the help of William Holland Thomas, who organized the Cherokee to fight for the Confederacy during the Civil War.
- The tribal chief is elected to a four-year term and tribal council meetings are open to the public.
added: December 12, 2008
updated: February 11, 2010