passed by the Tennessee Commission of Indian Affairs on 4 march 2006, Nashville

  1. WHEREAS, the area that now encompasses the Great State of Tennessee was once the homeland and tribal hunting grounds of a number of First Nations People who had great attachment to the land and who did staunchly defend their right to live, hunt, and draw nourishment from that land; and

  2. WHEREAS, those same people were decimated by imported diseases, warfare, and continual encroachment upon their land, their livelihood, and their way of life; and

  3. WHEREAS, as their numbers dwindled, their rights were usurped at the whim of foreign governments; and whether by choice, by force, or by treaty, these First Nations were made to give up their Natural Birthright and remove to other lands; and

  4. WHEREAS, although the tribes themselves were removed, many individuals managed to remain behind in the lands of their nativity; or, after removal, to return to the lands of their ancestry; and

  5. WHEREAS, the Eastern Ridge and Valley Region of the Tennessee River and its tributaries was known to be the home of the Yuchi Tribe, the Koasati Tribe, and the Tuskegee Tribe in times of earliest contact with the white man; and the evidence of early Muscogee (Creek) occupation in the same region is exhibited by the names of historic Indian towns such as Tallassee and Etowah; and

  6. WHEREAS, the tribes in this region were later supplanted by the Cherokee Tribe, who, in many cases, kept the same town names established by the earlier tribes; and went on to establish numerous new towns such as Tellico, Echota, and Settico; and claimed all of Middle Tennessee as their territorial hunting ground; and who, after 1729, allowed a band of the Natchez Tribe to establish a town in what is now known as Monroe County, in an area that is still known as Notchy Creek; and

  7. WHEREAS, about the time of the American Revolution, a war chief known as Dragging Canoe, and his followers, did separate from the Cherokee Nation and form a new tribe known as the Chickamaugas; and they established new towns in the lower Tennessee and Sequatchie River valleys, both within Tennessee and the neighboring states of Georgia and Alabama; and

  8. WHEREAS, the Chickasaw Tribe once occupied the area that was known as the Chickasaw Bluffs, and is now within the City of Memphis; and the Chickasaws claimed all of Middle Tennessee and West Tennessee as their territorial hunting grounds; and

  9. WHEREAS, portions of the Shawnee Tribe once lived in the Cumberland Basin of Tennessee before twice being expelled by an alliance of the Cherokees and Chickasaws; and after the formation of the Chickamauga Confederacy, the Shawnees were allowed to establish towns among their newfound allies, and left a memento of their name in the modern town of Sewanee; and

  10. WHEREAS, beginning in 1952, several members of the Choctaw Tribe began to move into Lauderdale and Shelby Counties in West Tennessee in search of employment, and established communities there; where, in 1992 the Federal Government purchased 172 acres near Henning to establish housing for them; and they still retain their language and practice many of their customs; and

  11. WHEREAS, there are many pre-historic Indian sites in Tennessee, such as Pinson Mounds, Old Stone Fort, and many lesser-known archaeological sites whose precise links to modern or historical tribes has yet to be definitively established;

BE IT HEREBY RESOLVED, that the above mentioned First Nations Peoples known as the Yuchi, Koasati, Tuskegee, Muscogee (Creek), Cherokee, Natchez, Chickamauga, Shawnee, and Choctaw, be recognized as the Historical Tribes of Tennessee; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that any other tribe(s) that archaeological or historical research can link to Tennessee, will likewise be given recognition as an Historical Tribe of Tennessee when sufficient evidence is presented.