Caddo
Overview
 
The Caddo Nation is a confederacy of several Southeastern
Southeastern tribes
Southeastern Woodlands peoples or Southeastern cultures are an ethnographic classification for Indigenous peoples that have traditionally inhabited the Southeastern United States and the northeastern border of Mexico, that share common cultural traits....

 Native American
Native Americans in the United States
Native Americans in the United States are the indigenous peoples in North America within the boundaries of the present-day continental United States, parts of Alaska, and the island state of Hawaii. They are composed of numerous, distinct tribes, states, and ethnic groups, many of which survive as...

 tribes, who traditionally inhabited much of what is now East Texas
East Texas
East Texas is a distinct geographic and ecological area in the U.S. state of Texas.According to the Handbook of Texas, the East Texas area "may be separated from the rest of Texas roughly by a line extending from the Red River in north central Lamar County southwestward to east central Limestone...

, northern Louisiana
Louisiana
Louisiana is a state located in the southern region of the United States of America. Its capital is Baton Rouge and largest city is New Orleans. Louisiana is the only state in the U.S. with political subdivisions termed parishes, which are local governments equivalent to counties...

 and portions of southern Arkansas
Arkansas
Arkansas is a state located in the southern region of the United States. Its name is an Algonquian name of the Quapaw Indians. Arkansas shares borders with six states , and its eastern border is largely defined by the Mississippi River...

 and Oklahoma
Oklahoma
Oklahoma is a state located in the South Central region of the United States of America. With an estimated 3,751,351 residents as of the 2010 census and a land area of 68,667 square miles , Oklahoma is the 28th most populous and 20th-largest state...

. Today the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma is a cohesive tribe with its capital at Binger, Oklahoma
Binger, Oklahoma
Binger is a town in Caddo County, Oklahoma, United States. The population was 708 at the 2000 census.Binger is the headquarters of the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma, who were settled here in the 1870s....

. The different Caddo languages have converged into a single language.
The Caddo Nation is a federally recognized tribe. They were previously known as the Caddo Tribe of Oklahoma.
Encyclopedia
The Caddo Nation is a confederacy of several Southeastern
Southeastern tribes
Southeastern Woodlands peoples or Southeastern cultures are an ethnographic classification for Indigenous peoples that have traditionally inhabited the Southeastern United States and the northeastern border of Mexico, that share common cultural traits....

 Native American
Native Americans in the United States
Native Americans in the United States are the indigenous peoples in North America within the boundaries of the present-day continental United States, parts of Alaska, and the island state of Hawaii. They are composed of numerous, distinct tribes, states, and ethnic groups, many of which survive as...

 tribes, who traditionally inhabited much of what is now East Texas
East Texas
East Texas is a distinct geographic and ecological area in the U.S. state of Texas.According to the Handbook of Texas, the East Texas area "may be separated from the rest of Texas roughly by a line extending from the Red River in north central Lamar County southwestward to east central Limestone...

, northern Louisiana
Louisiana
Louisiana is a state located in the southern region of the United States of America. Its capital is Baton Rouge and largest city is New Orleans. Louisiana is the only state in the U.S. with political subdivisions termed parishes, which are local governments equivalent to counties...

 and portions of southern Arkansas
Arkansas
Arkansas is a state located in the southern region of the United States. Its name is an Algonquian name of the Quapaw Indians. Arkansas shares borders with six states , and its eastern border is largely defined by the Mississippi River...

 and Oklahoma
Oklahoma
Oklahoma is a state located in the South Central region of the United States of America. With an estimated 3,751,351 residents as of the 2010 census and a land area of 68,667 square miles , Oklahoma is the 28th most populous and 20th-largest state...

. Today the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma is a cohesive tribe with its capital at Binger, Oklahoma
Binger, Oklahoma
Binger is a town in Caddo County, Oklahoma, United States. The population was 708 at the 2000 census.Binger is the headquarters of the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma, who were settled here in the 1870s....

. The different Caddo languages have converged into a single language.

Government and civic institutions

The Caddo Nation is a federally recognized tribe. They were previously known as the Caddo Tribe of Oklahoma. A tribal constitution provides for a tribal council consisting of eight members with a chairperson, based in Binger, Oklahoma. The tribal complex, dance grounds, and the Caddo Heritage Museum are located south of Binger. 5000 people are enrolled in the tribe, with 2500 living within the state of Oklahoma. The tribe operates its own housing authority and issues its own tribal vehicle tags. It maintains administrative centers, dance grounds, several community centers, and an active NAGPRA office.

Several programs exist to invigorate Caddo traditions. The tribe sponsors a summer culture camp for children. The Hasinai Society and Caddo Culture Club both keep Caddo songs and dances alive, while the Kiwat Hasinay Foundation is dedicated to preserving the Caddo language.

Current tribal officials

  • Chairperson: Brenda Shemayme Edwards
  • Vice-chairperson: Todd Downing Goodman
  • Secretary: Diane Sparks
  • Treasurer: Laura Sue Butler Jarvis
  • Representative, Fort Cobb: Eloise Harjo
  • Representative, Anadarko: Anna Donaghey
  • Representative, Binger: Marilyn Williams Threlkeld
  • Representative, Oklahoma City: Jennifer Reeder Crump

Archaeology

The Caddo are thought to be an extension of Woodland period
Woodland period
The Woodland period of North American pre-Columbian cultures was from roughly 1000 BCE to 1000 CE in the eastern part of North America. The term "Woodland Period" was introduced in the 1930s as a generic header for prehistoric sites falling between the Archaic hunter-gatherers and the...

 peoples, the Fourche Maline culture
Fourche Maline culture
The Fourche Maline culture was a Woodland Period Native American culture that existed from 300 BCE to 800 CE, in southeastern Oklahoma, southwestern Arkansas, northwestern Louisiana, and northeastern Texas. They are considered to be one of the main ancestral groups of the Caddoan Mississippian...

 and Mossy Grove cultures who were living in the area of Arkansas, Louisiana, and Texas between 200 BCE to 800 CE. The Wichita and Pawnee are related to the Caddo, as shown by their speaking Caddoan languages. By 800 CE this society had begun to coalesce into the Caddoan Mississippian culture
Caddoan Mississippian culture
The Caddoan Mississippian culture was a prehistoric Native American culture considered by archaeologists as a variant of the Mississippian culture. The Caddoan Mississippians covered a large territory, including what is now Eastern Oklahoma, Western Arkansas, Northeast Texas, and Northwest Louisiana...

. Some villages began to gain prominence as ritual centers, with elite residences and temple mound
Platform mound
A platform mound is any earthwork or mound intended to support a structure or activity.-Eastern North America:The indigenous peoples of North America built substructure mounds for well over a thousand years starting in the Archaic period and continuing through the Woodland period...

 constructions. The mounds were arranged around open plaza
Plaza
Plaza is a Spanish word related to "field" which describes an open urban public space, such as a city square. All through Spanish America, the plaza mayor of each center of administration held three closely related institutions: the cathedral, the cabildo or administrative center, which might be...

s, which were usually kept swept clean and were often used for ceremonial occasions. As complex religious and social ideas developed, some people and family lineages gained prominence over others. By 1000 CE a society that is defined as "Caddoan" had emerged. By 1200 the numerous villages, hamlets, and farmsteads established throughout the Caddo world had begun extensive maize
Maize
Maize known in many English-speaking countries as corn or mielie/mealie, is a grain domesticated by indigenous peoples in Mesoamerica in prehistoric times. The leafy stalk produces ears which contain seeds called kernels. Though technically a grain, maize kernels are used in cooking as a vegetable...

 agriculture. Their artistic skills and earthwork mound-building flourished during the 12th and 13th centuries. Spiro mounds
Spiro Mounds
Spiro Mounds is an important pre-Columbian Caddoan Mississippian culture archaeological site located in present-day eastern Oklahoma in the United States. The site is located seven miles north of Spiro, and is the only prehistoric Native American archaeological site in Oklahoma open to the public...

, some of the most elaborate in the United States, were made by ancestors of the Caddo and Wichita
Wichita (tribe)
The Wichita people are indigenous inhabitants of North America, who traditionally spoke the Wichita language, a Caddoan language. They have lived in Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas...

. The Caddo were farmers and enjoyed good growing conditions most of the time. However, the Pineywoods were affected by the Great Drought, from 1276–1299 CE.

Archeological evidence that the cultural continuity is unbroken from prehistory to the present, and that the direct ancestors of the Caddo and related Caddo language
Caddoan languages
The Caddoan languages are a family of Native American languages. They are spoken by Native Americans in parts of the Great Plains of the central United States, from North Dakota south to Oklahoma.-Family division:...

 speakers in prehistoric times and at first European contact and the modern Caddo Nation of Oklahoma is unquestioned today.

Oral history

Caddo oral history
Oral history
Oral history is the collection and study of historical information about individuals, families, important events, or everyday life using audiotapes, videotapes, or transcriptions of planned interviews...

 says the tribe emerged from an underground cave, called Chahkanina or "the place of crying," located at the confluence of the Red
Red River (Mississippi watershed)
The Red River, or sometimes the Red River of the South, is a major tributary of the Mississippi and Atchafalaya Rivers in the southern United States of America. The river gains its name from the red-bed country of its watershed. It is one of several rivers with that name...

 and Mississippi River
Mississippi River
The Mississippi River is the largest river system in North America. Flowing entirely in the United States, this river rises in western Minnesota and meanders slowly southwards for to the Mississippi River Delta at the Gulf of Mexico. With its many tributaries, the Mississippi's watershed drains...

s in northern Louisiana. Their leader, named Moon, instructed the people not to look back. An old Caddo man carried with him a drum, a pipe, and fire, all of which continued to be important religious items. His wife carried corn and pumpkin seeds. As people and accompanying animals emerged, the wolf looked back and the exit was closed to the remaining people and animals.

The Caddo peoples moved west along the Red River, or Bah'hatteno in Caddo. A Caddo woman, Zacado, instructed the tribe in hunting, fishing, home construction, and clothing. Caddo religion focuses on Kadhi háyuh, translating to "Lord Above" or "Lord of the Sky." In early times, the people were led by priests, including a head priest, the xinesi, who could commune with spirits residing near Caddo temples. A cycle of ceremonies corresponded to corn cultivation. Tobacco
Nicotiana rustica
Nicotiana rustica, known in South America as Mapacho and in Vietnam as Thuoc Lao , is a plant in the Solanaceae family. It is a very potent variety of tobacco. The high concentration of nicotine in its leaves makes it useful for creating organic pesticides.Rustica is also used for entheogenic...

 was and is used ceremonially. Early priests drank a purifying sacrament made of wild olive leaves.

Geography

The Caddo lived in the Piney Woods
Piney Woods
The Piney Woods is a temperate coniferous forest terrestrial ecoregion in the Southern United States covering of East Texas, southern Arkansas, western Louisiana, and southeastern Oklahoma. These coniferous forests are dominated by several species of pine as well as hardwoods including hickory and...

 eco-region of the United States up to the foothills of the Ozark Mountains and often near the Caddo River
Caddo River
The Caddo River is a tributary of the Ouachita River in the U.S. state of Arkansas. The river is about long altogther.-Course:The Caddo River flows out of the Ouachita Mountains through Montgomery, Pike, and Clark counties in Arkansas before flowing into DeGray Lake and then to its terminus at the...

. The Piney Woods is a dense forest of deciduous
Deciduous
Deciduous means "falling off at maturity" or "tending to fall off", and is typically used in reference to trees or shrubs that lose their leaves seasonally, and to the shedding of other plant structures such as petals after flowering or fruit when ripe...

 and conifer flora covering rolling hills, steep river valleys, and intermittent wetland
Wetland
A wetland is an area of land whose soil is saturated with water either permanently or seasonally. Wetlands are categorised by their characteristic vegetation, which is adapted to these unique soil conditions....

s called Bayous. Several Caddo villages were resettled, including the community of Elysian Fields, Texas
Elysian Fields, Texas
Elysian Fields is a rural unincorporated community in Harrison County, Texas, United States. It lies 11 miles southeast of the county seat of Marshall....

, and Nacogdoches
Nacogdoches, Texas
Nacogdoches is a city in Nacogdoches County, Texas, in the United States. The 2010 census recorded the city's population to be 32,996. It is the county seat of Nacogdoches County and is situated in East Texas. Nacogdoches is a sister city of Natchitoches, Louisiana.Nacogdoches is the home of...

 and Natchitoches
Natchitoches, Louisiana
Natchitoches is a city in and the parish seat of Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana, United States. Established in 1714 by Louis Juchereau de St. Denis as part of French Louisiana, the community was named after the Natchitoches Indian tribe. The City of Natchitoches was first incorporated on February...

, both of which have kept their original names. The Caddo were progressively moved further west until they reached what is now western Oklahoma. The geography of the drier plains was quite a contrast to the lush hilly forest that were formerly their homeland. The Caddo's food varied in many types, the most common being dried corn. Sunflower seeds and pumpkins were also important staples with cultural significance, as were wild turkey
Wild Turkey
The Wild Turkey is native to North America and is the heaviest member of the Galliformes. It is the same species as the domestic turkey, which derives from the South Mexican subspecies of wild turkey .Adult wild turkeys have long reddish-yellow to grayish-green...

s.

Post-contact history

The Caddo first encountered Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

ans in 1541 when the Hernando de Soto
Hernando de Soto (explorer)
Hernando de Soto was a Spanish explorer and conquistador who, while leading the first European expedition deep into the territory of the modern-day United States, was the first European documented to have crossed the Mississippi River....

 Expedition came through their lands. De Soto's force had a violent clash with one band of Caddo Indians, the Tula
Tula tribe
The Tula were a Native American tribe that lived in what is now western Arkansas.-History:The Tula are known to history only from the chronicles of Spanish conquistador Hernando de Soto's exploits in the interior of North America....

, near Caddo Gap, Arkansas
Caddo Gap, Arkansas
Caddo Gap is a small unincorporated community in Montgomery County, Arkansas, United States. It lies between Glenwood and Norman on the Caddo River. It is best known as the area in which explorer Hernando de Soto and his forces clashed with the Tula tribe, a band loosely affiliated with the Caddo...

. This event is marked by a monument that stands in the small town today.

The Caddo tribes were divided into three confederacies when first encountered by the Europeans, the Hasinai, Kadohadacho, and Natchitoches, and loosely affiliated with other tribes. The Haisinai lived in East Texas
East Texas
East Texas is a distinct geographic and ecological area in the U.S. state of Texas.According to the Handbook of Texas, the East Texas area "may be separated from the rest of Texas roughly by a line extending from the Red River in north central Lamar County southwestward to east central Limestone...

, the Kadohadacho lived near the border of Texas, Oklahoma
Oklahoma
Oklahoma is a state located in the South Central region of the United States of America. With an estimated 3,751,351 residents as of the 2010 census and a land area of 68,667 square miles , Oklahoma is the 28th most populous and 20th-largest state...

, and Arkansas
Arkansas
Arkansas is a state located in the southern region of the United States. Its name is an Algonquian name of the Quapaw Indians. Arkansas shares borders with six states , and its eastern border is largely defined by the Mississippi River...

, and the Natchitoches lived in now northern Louisiana
Louisiana
Louisiana is a state located in the southern region of the United States of America. Its capital is Baton Rouge and largest city is New Orleans. Louisiana is the only state in the U.S. with political subdivisions termed parishes, which are local governments equivalent to counties...

.

With the arrival of missionaries
Missionary
A missionary is a member of a religious group sent into an area to do evangelism or ministries of service, such as education, literacy, social justice, health care and economic development. The word "mission" originates from 1598 when the Jesuits sent members abroad, derived from the Latin...

 from Spain
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 and France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

, a smallpox
Smallpox
Smallpox was an infectious disease unique to humans, caused by either of two virus variants, Variola major and Variola minor. The disease is also known by the Latin names Variola or Variola vera, which is a derivative of the Latin varius, meaning "spotted", or varus, meaning "pimple"...

 epidemic
Epidemic
In epidemiology, an epidemic , occurs when new cases of a certain disease, in a given human population, and during a given period, substantially exceed what is expected based on recent experience...

 broke out that decimated the population. Measles
Measles
Measles, also known as rubeola or morbilli, is an infection of the respiratory system caused by a virus, specifically a paramyxovirus of the genus Morbillivirus. Morbilliviruses, like other paramyxoviruses, are enveloped, single-stranded, negative-sense RNA viruses...

, influenza
Influenza
Influenza, commonly referred to as the flu, is an infectious disease caused by RNA viruses of the family Orthomyxoviridae , that affects birds and mammals...

, and malaria
Malaria
Malaria is a mosquito-borne infectious disease of humans and other animals caused by eukaryotic protists of the genus Plasmodium. The disease results from the multiplication of Plasmodium parasites within red blood cells, causing symptoms that typically include fever and headache, in severe cases...

 also devastated the Caddo, as these were Eurasian diseases to which they had no immunity.

Before extensive European contact, some of the Caddo territory was invaded by migrating Osage
Osage Nation
The Osage Nation is a Native American Siouan-language tribe in the United States that originated in the Ohio River valley in present-day Kentucky. After years of war with invading Iroquois, the Osage migrated west of the Mississippi River to their historic lands in present-day Arkansas, Missouri,...

, Ponca
Ponca
The Ponca are a Native American people of the Dhegihan branch of the Siouan-language group. There are two federally recognized Ponca tribes: the Ponca Tribe of Nebraska and the Ponca Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma...

, Omaha and Kaw, who had moved west beginning about 1200 CE because of years of warfare with the Iroquois
Iroquois
The Iroquois , also known as the Haudenosaunee or the "People of the Longhouse", are an association of several tribes of indigenous people of North America...

 in the Ohio River
Ohio River
The Ohio River is the largest tributary, by volume, of the Mississippi River. At the confluence, the Ohio is even bigger than the Mississippi and, thus, is hydrologically the main stream of the whole river system, including the Allegheny River further upstream...

 area of present-day Kentucky
Kentucky
The Commonwealth of Kentucky is a state located in the East Central United States of America. As classified by the United States Census Bureau, Kentucky is a Southern state, more specifically in the East South Central region. Kentucky is one of four U.S. states constituted as a commonwealth...

. The Osage particularly dominated the Caddo and pushed them out of some former territory, becoming dominant in the region of Missouri
Missouri
Missouri is a US state located in the Midwestern United States, bordered by Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska. With a 2010 population of 5,988,927, Missouri is the 18th most populous state in the nation and the fifth most populous in the Midwest. It...

, Arkansas
Arkansas
Arkansas is a state located in the southern region of the United States. Its name is an Algonquian name of the Quapaw Indians. Arkansas shares borders with six states , and its eastern border is largely defined by the Mississippi River...

, Kansas
Kansas
Kansas is a US state located in the Midwestern United States. It is named after the Kansas River which flows through it, which in turn was named after the Kansa Native American tribe, which inhabited the area. The tribe's name is often said to mean "people of the wind" or "people of the south...

 and Oklahoma. The new tribes had become well settled in their new traditional grounds west of the Mississippi by mid-18th century European contact.

Having given way over years before the power of the former Ohio Valley tribes, Caddos later negotiated for place with Spanish, French, and finally Anglo-American settlers. After the 1803 Louisiana Purchase
Louisiana Purchase
The Louisiana Purchase was the acquisition by the United States of America of of France's claim to the territory of Louisiana in 1803. The U.S...

, the United States government sought to ally with the Caddos. In 1835 the Kadohadacho, the northernmost Caddo confederacy, signed a treaty with the US to relocate to then Mexico
Mexico
The United Mexican States , commonly known as Mexico , is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of...

. This area had been rapidly transformed by greatly increased immigration of European Americans, who in 1836 declared independence from Mexico with the Republic of Texas
Republic of Texas
The Republic of Texas was an independent nation in North America, bordering the United States and Mexico, that existed from 1836 to 1846.Formed as a break-away republic from Mexico by the Texas Revolution, the state claimed borders that encompassed an area that included all of the present U.S...

. "Texas" comes from the Hasinai word táysha?, meaning "friend."

In 1845 when Texas was admitted to the US as a state, the government forced the relocation of both the Hasinai and the Kadohadacho onto the Brazos Reservation. In 1859 many of the Caddo were relocated to Indian Territory
Indian Territory
The Indian Territory, also known as the Indian Territories and the Indian Country, was land set aside within the United States for the settlement of American Indians...

 west of the Mississippi River
Mississippi River
The Mississippi River is the largest river system in North America. Flowing entirely in the United States, this river rises in western Minnesota and meanders slowly southwards for to the Mississippi River Delta at the Gulf of Mexico. With its many tributaries, the Mississippi's watershed drains...

. After the Civil War
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

, the Caddo were concentrated on a reservation located between the Washita
Washita River
The Washita River is a river in Texas and Oklahoma, United States. The river is long and terminates into Lake Texoma in Johnston County , Oklahoma and the Red River.-Geography:...

 and Canadian
Canadian River
The Canadian River is the longest tributary of the Arkansas River. It is about long, starting in Colorado and traveling through New Mexico, the Texas Panhandle, and most of Oklahoma....

 rivers.

In the late 19th century, the Caddo took up the Ghost Dance
Ghost Dance
The Ghost Dance was a new religious movement which was incorporated into numerous Native American belief systems. The traditional ritual used in the Ghost Dance, the circle dance, has been used by many Native Americans since prehistoric times...

 religion, which was widespread among American Indian nations in the West
Western world
The Western world, also known as the West and the Occident , is a term referring to the countries of Western Europe , the countries of the Americas, as well all countries of Northern and Central Europe, Australia and New Zealand...

. John Wilson
John Wilson (Caddo)
John Wilson was a Caddo-Delaware-French medicine man and religious leader.John Wilson's Caddo name was Nishkû'ntu, meaning "Moon Head." Though he was of half-Delaware descent, John Wilson spoke only the Caddo language and identified only as a Caddo. In 1890, he became an influential leader in the...

, a Caddo-Delaware
Lenape
The Lenape are an Algonquian group of Native Americans of the Northeastern Woodlands. They are also called Delaware Indians. As a result of the American Revolutionary War and later Indian removals from the eastern United States, today the main groups live in Canada, where they are enrolled in the...

 medicine man who spoke only Caddo
Caddo language
Caddo is the only surviving Southern Caddoan language of the Caddo language family. It is spoken by the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma. Today, only 25 elderly speakers are estimated to remain, none of whom are monolingual Caddo speakers, making Caddo a critically endangered language...

, was an influential leader in the Ghost Dance. In 1880, Wilson became a peyote
Peyote
Lophophora williamsii , better known by its common name Peyote , is a small, spineless cactus with psychoactive alkaloids, particularly mescaline.It is native to southwestern Texas and Mexico...

roadman. The tribe had known the Half Moon peyote ceremony, but Wilson introduced the Big Moon ceremony to them. The Caddo tribe remains very active in the Native American Church
Native American Church
Native American Church, a religious denomination which practices Peyotism or the Peyote religion, originated in the U.S. state of Oklahoma, and is the most widespread indigenous religion among Native Americans in the United States...

 today.

After the turn of the century, the Curtis Act dismantled tribal institutions. The Dawes Act
Dawes Act
The Dawes Act, adopted by Congress in 1887, authorized the President of the United States to survey Indian tribal land and divide the land into allotments for individual Indians. The Act was named for its sponsor, Senator Henry L. Dawes of Massachusetts. The Dawes Act was amended in 1891 and again...

 was directed at assimilation by breaking up tribal common landholdings into allotments for individual members. The Caddo vigorously opposed allotment. Whitebread, a Caddo leader, said, that "because of their peaceful lives and friendship to the white man, and through their ignorance were not consulted, and have been ignored and stuck away in a corner and allowed to exist by sufferance."

The Oklahoma Indian Welfare Act
Oklahoma Indian Welfare Act
The Oklahoma Indian Welfare Act of 1936, also known as the Thomas-Rogers Act, is a United States federal law that extended the US Indian Reorganization Act of 1934. It sought to return some form of tribal government to the many tribes in former Indian Territory...

 of 1936 provided the opportunity for the Caddo to reform their tribal government. They organized in 1938 as the Caddo Indian Tribe of Oklahoma. They ratified their constitution on 17 January 1938. In 1976, they drafted a new constitution. During the 20th century, Caddo leaders such as Melford Williams, Harry Guy, Hubert Halfmoon, and Vernon Hunter have shaped the tribe.

In a special election on 29 June 2002, six amendments were made to the constitution. Tribal enrollment is open to individuals with a documented minimum of 1/16 degree Caddo blood.


The Caddo Nation is a confederacy of several Southeastern
Southeastern tribes
Southeastern Woodlands peoples or Southeastern cultures are an ethnographic classification for Indigenous peoples that have traditionally inhabited the Southeastern United States and the northeastern border of Mexico, that share common cultural traits....

 Native American
Native Americans in the United States
Native Americans in the United States are the indigenous peoples in North America within the boundaries of the present-day continental United States, parts of Alaska, and the island state of Hawaii. They are composed of numerous, distinct tribes, states, and ethnic groups, many of which survive as...

 tribes, who traditionally inhabited much of what is now East Texas
East Texas
East Texas is a distinct geographic and ecological area in the U.S. state of Texas.According to the Handbook of Texas, the East Texas area "may be separated from the rest of Texas roughly by a line extending from the Red River in north central Lamar County southwestward to east central Limestone...

, northern Louisiana
Louisiana
Louisiana is a state located in the southern region of the United States of America. Its capital is Baton Rouge and largest city is New Orleans. Louisiana is the only state in the U.S. with political subdivisions termed parishes, which are local governments equivalent to counties...

 and portions of southern Arkansas
Arkansas
Arkansas is a state located in the southern region of the United States. Its name is an Algonquian name of the Quapaw Indians. Arkansas shares borders with six states , and its eastern border is largely defined by the Mississippi River...

 and Oklahoma
Oklahoma
Oklahoma is a state located in the South Central region of the United States of America. With an estimated 3,751,351 residents as of the 2010 census and a land area of 68,667 square miles , Oklahoma is the 28th most populous and 20th-largest state...

. Today the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma is a cohesive tribe with its capital at Binger, Oklahoma
Binger, Oklahoma
Binger is a town in Caddo County, Oklahoma, United States. The population was 708 at the 2000 census.Binger is the headquarters of the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma, who were settled here in the 1870s....

. The different Caddo languages have converged into a single language.

Government and civic institutions

The Caddo Nation is a federally recognized tribe. They were previously known as the Caddo Tribe of Oklahoma. A tribal constitution provides for a tribal council consisting of eight members with a chairperson, based in Binger, Oklahoma. The tribal complex, dance grounds, and the Caddo Heritage Museum are located south of Binger. 5000 people are enrolled in the tribe, with 2500 living within the state of Oklahoma. The tribe operates its own housing authority and issues its own tribal vehicle tags. It maintains administrative centers, dance grounds, several community centers, and an active NAGPRA office.

Several programs exist to invigorate Caddo traditions. The tribe sponsors a summer culture camp for children. The Hasinai Society and Caddo Culture Club both keep Caddo songs and dances alive, while the Kiwat Hasinay Foundation is dedicated to preserving the Caddo language.

Current tribal officials

  • Chairperson: Brenda Shemayme Edwards
  • Vice-chairperson: Todd Downing Goodman
  • Secretary: Diane Sparks
  • Treasurer: Laura Sue Butler Jarvis
  • Representative, Fort Cobb: Eloise Harjo
  • Representative, Anadarko: Anna Donaghey
  • Representative, Binger: Marilyn Williams Threlkeld
  • Representative, Oklahoma City: Jennifer Reeder Crump

Archaeology

The Caddo are thought to be an extension of Woodland period
Woodland period
The Woodland period of North American pre-Columbian cultures was from roughly 1000 BCE to 1000 CE in the eastern part of North America. The term "Woodland Period" was introduced in the 1930s as a generic header for prehistoric sites falling between the Archaic hunter-gatherers and the...

 peoples, the Fourche Maline culture
Fourche Maline culture
The Fourche Maline culture was a Woodland Period Native American culture that existed from 300 BCE to 800 CE, in southeastern Oklahoma, southwestern Arkansas, northwestern Louisiana, and northeastern Texas. They are considered to be one of the main ancestral groups of the Caddoan Mississippian...

 and Mossy Grove cultures who were living in the area of Arkansas, Louisiana, and Texas between 200 BCE to 800 CE. The Wichita and Pawnee are related to the Caddo, as shown by their speaking Caddoan languages. By 800 CE this society had begun to coalesce into the Caddoan Mississippian culture
Caddoan Mississippian culture
The Caddoan Mississippian culture was a prehistoric Native American culture considered by archaeologists as a variant of the Mississippian culture. The Caddoan Mississippians covered a large territory, including what is now Eastern Oklahoma, Western Arkansas, Northeast Texas, and Northwest Louisiana...

. Some villages began to gain prominence as ritual centers, with elite residences and temple mound
Platform mound
A platform mound is any earthwork or mound intended to support a structure or activity.-Eastern North America:The indigenous peoples of North America built substructure mounds for well over a thousand years starting in the Archaic period and continuing through the Woodland period...

 constructions. The mounds were arranged around open plaza
Plaza
Plaza is a Spanish word related to "field" which describes an open urban public space, such as a city square. All through Spanish America, the plaza mayor of each center of administration held three closely related institutions: the cathedral, the cabildo or administrative center, which might be...

s, which were usually kept swept clean and were often used for ceremonial occasions. As complex religious and social ideas developed, some people and family lineages gained prominence over others. By 1000 CE a society that is defined as "Caddoan" had emerged. By 1200 the numerous villages, hamlets, and farmsteads established throughout the Caddo world had begun extensive maize
Maize
Maize known in many English-speaking countries as corn or mielie/mealie, is a grain domesticated by indigenous peoples in Mesoamerica in prehistoric times. The leafy stalk produces ears which contain seeds called kernels. Though technically a grain, maize kernels are used in cooking as a vegetable...

 agriculture. Their artistic skills and earthwork mound-building flourished during the 12th and 13th centuries. Spiro mounds
Spiro Mounds
Spiro Mounds is an important pre-Columbian Caddoan Mississippian culture archaeological site located in present-day eastern Oklahoma in the United States. The site is located seven miles north of Spiro, and is the only prehistoric Native American archaeological site in Oklahoma open to the public...

, some of the most elaborate in the United States, were made by ancestors of the Caddo and Wichita
Wichita (tribe)
The Wichita people are indigenous inhabitants of North America, who traditionally spoke the Wichita language, a Caddoan language. They have lived in Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas...

. The Caddo were farmers and enjoyed good growing conditions most of the time. However, the Pineywoods were affected by the Great Drought, from 1276–1299 CE.

Archeological evidence that the cultural continuity is unbroken from prehistory to the present, and that the direct ancestors of the Caddo and related Caddo language
Caddoan languages
The Caddoan languages are a family of Native American languages. They are spoken by Native Americans in parts of the Great Plains of the central United States, from North Dakota south to Oklahoma.-Family division:...

 speakers in prehistoric times and at first European contact and the modern Caddo Nation of Oklahoma is unquestioned today.

Oral history

Caddo oral history
Oral history
Oral history is the collection and study of historical information about individuals, families, important events, or everyday life using audiotapes, videotapes, or transcriptions of planned interviews...

 says the tribe emerged from an underground cave, called Chahkanina or "the place of crying," located at the confluence of the Red
Red River (Mississippi watershed)
The Red River, or sometimes the Red River of the South, is a major tributary of the Mississippi and Atchafalaya Rivers in the southern United States of America. The river gains its name from the red-bed country of its watershed. It is one of several rivers with that name...

 and Mississippi River
Mississippi River
The Mississippi River is the largest river system in North America. Flowing entirely in the United States, this river rises in western Minnesota and meanders slowly southwards for to the Mississippi River Delta at the Gulf of Mexico. With its many tributaries, the Mississippi's watershed drains...

s in northern Louisiana. Their leader, named Moon, instructed the people not to look back. An old Caddo man carried with him a drum, a pipe, and fire, all of which continued to be important religious items. His wife carried corn and pumpkin seeds. As people and accompanying animals emerged, the wolf looked back and the exit was closed to the remaining people and animals.

The Caddo peoples moved west along the Red River, or Bah'hatteno in Caddo. A Caddo woman, Zacado, instructed the tribe in hunting, fishing, home construction, and clothing. Caddo religion focuses on Kadhi háyuh, translating to "Lord Above" or "Lord of the Sky." In early times, the people were led by priests, including a head priest, the xinesi, who could commune with spirits residing near Caddo temples. A cycle of ceremonies corresponded to corn cultivation. Tobacco
Nicotiana rustica
Nicotiana rustica, known in South America as Mapacho and in Vietnam as Thuoc Lao , is a plant in the Solanaceae family. It is a very potent variety of tobacco. The high concentration of nicotine in its leaves makes it useful for creating organic pesticides.Rustica is also used for entheogenic...

 was and is used ceremonially. Early priests drank a purifying sacrament made of wild olive leaves.

Geography

The Caddo lived in the Piney Woods
Piney Woods
The Piney Woods is a temperate coniferous forest terrestrial ecoregion in the Southern United States covering of East Texas, southern Arkansas, western Louisiana, and southeastern Oklahoma. These coniferous forests are dominated by several species of pine as well as hardwoods including hickory and...

 eco-region of the United States up to the foothills of the Ozark Mountains and often near the Caddo River
Caddo River
The Caddo River is a tributary of the Ouachita River in the U.S. state of Arkansas. The river is about long altogther.-Course:The Caddo River flows out of the Ouachita Mountains through Montgomery, Pike, and Clark counties in Arkansas before flowing into DeGray Lake and then to its terminus at the...

. The Piney Woods is a dense forest of deciduous
Deciduous
Deciduous means "falling off at maturity" or "tending to fall off", and is typically used in reference to trees or shrubs that lose their leaves seasonally, and to the shedding of other plant structures such as petals after flowering or fruit when ripe...

 and conifer flora covering rolling hills, steep river valleys, and intermittent wetland
Wetland
A wetland is an area of land whose soil is saturated with water either permanently or seasonally. Wetlands are categorised by their characteristic vegetation, which is adapted to these unique soil conditions....

s called Bayous. Several Caddo villages were resettled, including the community of Elysian Fields, Texas
Elysian Fields, Texas
Elysian Fields is a rural unincorporated community in Harrison County, Texas, United States. It lies 11 miles southeast of the county seat of Marshall....

, and Nacogdoches
Nacogdoches, Texas
Nacogdoches is a city in Nacogdoches County, Texas, in the United States. The 2010 census recorded the city's population to be 32,996. It is the county seat of Nacogdoches County and is situated in East Texas. Nacogdoches is a sister city of Natchitoches, Louisiana.Nacogdoches is the home of...

 and Natchitoches
Natchitoches, Louisiana
Natchitoches is a city in and the parish seat of Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana, United States. Established in 1714 by Louis Juchereau de St. Denis as part of French Louisiana, the community was named after the Natchitoches Indian tribe. The City of Natchitoches was first incorporated on February...

, both of which have kept their original names. The Caddo were progressively moved further west until they reached what is now western Oklahoma. The geography of the drier plains was quite a contrast to the lush hilly forest that were formerly their homeland. The Caddo's food varied in many types, the most common being dried corn. Sunflower seeds and pumpkins were also important staples with cultural significance, as were wild turkey
Wild Turkey
The Wild Turkey is native to North America and is the heaviest member of the Galliformes. It is the same species as the domestic turkey, which derives from the South Mexican subspecies of wild turkey .Adult wild turkeys have long reddish-yellow to grayish-green...

s.

Post-contact history

The Caddo first encountered Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

ans in 1541 when the Hernando de Soto
Hernando de Soto (explorer)
Hernando de Soto was a Spanish explorer and conquistador who, while leading the first European expedition deep into the territory of the modern-day United States, was the first European documented to have crossed the Mississippi River....

 Expedition came through their lands. De Soto's force had a violent clash with one band of Caddo Indians, the Tula
Tula tribe
The Tula were a Native American tribe that lived in what is now western Arkansas.-History:The Tula are known to history only from the chronicles of Spanish conquistador Hernando de Soto's exploits in the interior of North America....

, near Caddo Gap, Arkansas
Caddo Gap, Arkansas
Caddo Gap is a small unincorporated community in Montgomery County, Arkansas, United States. It lies between Glenwood and Norman on the Caddo River. It is best known as the area in which explorer Hernando de Soto and his forces clashed with the Tula tribe, a band loosely affiliated with the Caddo...

. This event is marked by a monument that stands in the small town today.

The Caddo tribes were divided into three confederacies when first encountered by the Europeans, the Hasinai, Kadohadacho, and Natchitoches, and loosely affiliated with other tribes. The Haisinai lived in East Texas
East Texas
East Texas is a distinct geographic and ecological area in the U.S. state of Texas.According to the Handbook of Texas, the East Texas area "may be separated from the rest of Texas roughly by a line extending from the Red River in north central Lamar County southwestward to east central Limestone...

, the Kadohadacho lived near the border of Texas, Oklahoma
Oklahoma
Oklahoma is a state located in the South Central region of the United States of America. With an estimated 3,751,351 residents as of the 2010 census and a land area of 68,667 square miles , Oklahoma is the 28th most populous and 20th-largest state...

, and Arkansas
Arkansas
Arkansas is a state located in the southern region of the United States. Its name is an Algonquian name of the Quapaw Indians. Arkansas shares borders with six states , and its eastern border is largely defined by the Mississippi River...

, and the Natchitoches lived in now northern Louisiana
Louisiana
Louisiana is a state located in the southern region of the United States of America. Its capital is Baton Rouge and largest city is New Orleans. Louisiana is the only state in the U.S. with political subdivisions termed parishes, which are local governments equivalent to counties...

.

With the arrival of missionaries
Missionary
A missionary is a member of a religious group sent into an area to do evangelism or ministries of service, such as education, literacy, social justice, health care and economic development. The word "mission" originates from 1598 when the Jesuits sent members abroad, derived from the Latin...

 from Spain
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 and France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

, a smallpox
Smallpox
Smallpox was an infectious disease unique to humans, caused by either of two virus variants, Variola major and Variola minor. The disease is also known by the Latin names Variola or Variola vera, which is a derivative of the Latin varius, meaning "spotted", or varus, meaning "pimple"...

 epidemic
Epidemic
In epidemiology, an epidemic , occurs when new cases of a certain disease, in a given human population, and during a given period, substantially exceed what is expected based on recent experience...

 broke out that decimated the population. Measles
Measles
Measles, also known as rubeola or morbilli, is an infection of the respiratory system caused by a virus, specifically a paramyxovirus of the genus Morbillivirus. Morbilliviruses, like other paramyxoviruses, are enveloped, single-stranded, negative-sense RNA viruses...

, influenza
Influenza
Influenza, commonly referred to as the flu, is an infectious disease caused by RNA viruses of the family Orthomyxoviridae , that affects birds and mammals...

, and malaria
Malaria
Malaria is a mosquito-borne infectious disease of humans and other animals caused by eukaryotic protists of the genus Plasmodium. The disease results from the multiplication of Plasmodium parasites within red blood cells, causing symptoms that typically include fever and headache, in severe cases...

 also devastated the Caddo, as these were Eurasian diseases to which they had no immunity.

Before extensive European contact, some of the Caddo territory was invaded by migrating Osage
Osage Nation
The Osage Nation is a Native American Siouan-language tribe in the United States that originated in the Ohio River valley in present-day Kentucky. After years of war with invading Iroquois, the Osage migrated west of the Mississippi River to their historic lands in present-day Arkansas, Missouri,...

, Ponca
Ponca
The Ponca are a Native American people of the Dhegihan branch of the Siouan-language group. There are two federally recognized Ponca tribes: the Ponca Tribe of Nebraska and the Ponca Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma...

, Omaha and Kaw, who had moved west beginning about 1200 CE because of years of warfare with the Iroquois
Iroquois
The Iroquois , also known as the Haudenosaunee or the "People of the Longhouse", are an association of several tribes of indigenous people of North America...

 in the Ohio River
Ohio River
The Ohio River is the largest tributary, by volume, of the Mississippi River. At the confluence, the Ohio is even bigger than the Mississippi and, thus, is hydrologically the main stream of the whole river system, including the Allegheny River further upstream...

 area of present-day Kentucky
Kentucky
The Commonwealth of Kentucky is a state located in the East Central United States of America. As classified by the United States Census Bureau, Kentucky is a Southern state, more specifically in the East South Central region. Kentucky is one of four U.S. states constituted as a commonwealth...

. The Osage particularly dominated the Caddo and pushed them out of some former territory, becoming dominant in the region of Missouri
Missouri
Missouri is a US state located in the Midwestern United States, bordered by Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska. With a 2010 population of 5,988,927, Missouri is the 18th most populous state in the nation and the fifth most populous in the Midwest. It...

, Arkansas
Arkansas
Arkansas is a state located in the southern region of the United States. Its name is an Algonquian name of the Quapaw Indians. Arkansas shares borders with six states , and its eastern border is largely defined by the Mississippi River...

, Kansas
Kansas
Kansas is a US state located in the Midwestern United States. It is named after the Kansas River which flows through it, which in turn was named after the Kansa Native American tribe, which inhabited the area. The tribe's name is often said to mean "people of the wind" or "people of the south...

 and Oklahoma. The new tribes had become well settled in their new traditional grounds west of the Mississippi by mid-18th century European contact.

Having given way over years before the power of the former Ohio Valley tribes, Caddos later negotiated for place with Spanish, French, and finally Anglo-American settlers. After the 1803 Louisiana Purchase
Louisiana Purchase
The Louisiana Purchase was the acquisition by the United States of America of of France's claim to the territory of Louisiana in 1803. The U.S...

, the United States government sought to ally with the Caddos. In 1835 the Kadohadacho, the northernmost Caddo confederacy, signed a treaty with the US to relocate to then Mexico
Mexico
The United Mexican States , commonly known as Mexico , is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of...

. This area had been rapidly transformed by greatly increased immigration of European Americans, who in 1836 declared independence from Mexico with the Republic of Texas
Republic of Texas
The Republic of Texas was an independent nation in North America, bordering the United States and Mexico, that existed from 1836 to 1846.Formed as a break-away republic from Mexico by the Texas Revolution, the state claimed borders that encompassed an area that included all of the present U.S...

. "Texas" comes from the Hasinai word táysha?, meaning "friend."

In 1845 when Texas was admitted to the US as a state, the government forced the relocation of both the Hasinai and the Kadohadacho onto the Brazos Reservation. In 1859 many of the Caddo were relocated to Indian Territory
Indian Territory
The Indian Territory, also known as the Indian Territories and the Indian Country, was land set aside within the United States for the settlement of American Indians...

 west of the Mississippi River
Mississippi River
The Mississippi River is the largest river system in North America. Flowing entirely in the United States, this river rises in western Minnesota and meanders slowly southwards for to the Mississippi River Delta at the Gulf of Mexico. With its many tributaries, the Mississippi's watershed drains...

. After the Civil War
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

, the Caddo were concentrated on a reservation located between the Washita
Washita River
The Washita River is a river in Texas and Oklahoma, United States. The river is long and terminates into Lake Texoma in Johnston County , Oklahoma and the Red River.-Geography:...

 and Canadian
Canadian River
The Canadian River is the longest tributary of the Arkansas River. It is about long, starting in Colorado and traveling through New Mexico, the Texas Panhandle, and most of Oklahoma....

 rivers.

In the late 19th century, the Caddo took up the Ghost Dance
Ghost Dance
The Ghost Dance was a new religious movement which was incorporated into numerous Native American belief systems. The traditional ritual used in the Ghost Dance, the circle dance, has been used by many Native Americans since prehistoric times...

 religion, which was widespread among American Indian nations in the West
Western world
The Western world, also known as the West and the Occident , is a term referring to the countries of Western Europe , the countries of the Americas, as well all countries of Northern and Central Europe, Australia and New Zealand...

. John Wilson
John Wilson (Caddo)
John Wilson was a Caddo-Delaware-French medicine man and religious leader.John Wilson's Caddo name was Nishkû'ntu, meaning "Moon Head." Though he was of half-Delaware descent, John Wilson spoke only the Caddo language and identified only as a Caddo. In 1890, he became an influential leader in the...

, a Caddo-Delaware
Lenape
The Lenape are an Algonquian group of Native Americans of the Northeastern Woodlands. They are also called Delaware Indians. As a result of the American Revolutionary War and later Indian removals from the eastern United States, today the main groups live in Canada, where they are enrolled in the...

 medicine man who spoke only Caddo
Caddo language
Caddo is the only surviving Southern Caddoan language of the Caddo language family. It is spoken by the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma. Today, only 25 elderly speakers are estimated to remain, none of whom are monolingual Caddo speakers, making Caddo a critically endangered language...

, was an influential leader in the Ghost Dance. In 1880, Wilson became a peyote
Peyote
Lophophora williamsii , better known by its common name Peyote , is a small, spineless cactus with psychoactive alkaloids, particularly mescaline.It is native to southwestern Texas and Mexico...

roadman. The tribe had known the Half Moon peyote ceremony, but Wilson introduced the Big Moon ceremony to them. The Caddo tribe remains very active in the Native American Church
Native American Church
Native American Church, a religious denomination which practices Peyotism or the Peyote religion, originated in the U.S. state of Oklahoma, and is the most widespread indigenous religion among Native Americans in the United States...

 today.

After the turn of the century, the Curtis Act dismantled tribal institutions. The Dawes Act
Dawes Act
The Dawes Act, adopted by Congress in 1887, authorized the President of the United States to survey Indian tribal land and divide the land into allotments for individual Indians. The Act was named for its sponsor, Senator Henry L. Dawes of Massachusetts. The Dawes Act was amended in 1891 and again...

 was directed at assimilation by breaking up tribal common landholdings into allotments for individual members. The Caddo vigorously opposed allotment. Whitebread, a Caddo leader, said, that "because of their peaceful lives and friendship to the white man, and through their ignorance were not consulted, and have been ignored and stuck away in a corner and allowed to exist by sufferance."

The Oklahoma Indian Welfare Act
Oklahoma Indian Welfare Act
The Oklahoma Indian Welfare Act of 1936, also known as the Thomas-Rogers Act, is a United States federal law that extended the US Indian Reorganization Act of 1934. It sought to return some form of tribal government to the many tribes in former Indian Territory...

 of 1936 provided the opportunity for the Caddo to reform their tribal government. They organized in 1938 as the Caddo Indian Tribe of Oklahoma. They ratified their constitution on 17 January 1938. In 1976, they drafted a new constitution. During the 20th century, Caddo leaders such as Melford Williams, Harry Guy, Hubert Halfmoon, and Vernon Hunter have shaped the tribe.

In a special election on 29 June 2002, six amendments were made to the constitution. Tribal enrollment is open to individuals with a documented minimum of 1/16 degree Caddo blood.


The Caddo Nation is a confederacy of several Southeastern
Southeastern tribes
Southeastern Woodlands peoples or Southeastern cultures are an ethnographic classification for Indigenous peoples that have traditionally inhabited the Southeastern United States and the northeastern border of Mexico, that share common cultural traits....

 Native American
Native Americans in the United States
Native Americans in the United States are the indigenous peoples in North America within the boundaries of the present-day continental United States, parts of Alaska, and the island state of Hawaii. They are composed of numerous, distinct tribes, states, and ethnic groups, many of which survive as...

 tribes, who traditionally inhabited much of what is now East Texas
East Texas
East Texas is a distinct geographic and ecological area in the U.S. state of Texas.According to the Handbook of Texas, the East Texas area "may be separated from the rest of Texas roughly by a line extending from the Red River in north central Lamar County southwestward to east central Limestone...

, northern Louisiana
Louisiana
Louisiana is a state located in the southern region of the United States of America. Its capital is Baton Rouge and largest city is New Orleans. Louisiana is the only state in the U.S. with political subdivisions termed parishes, which are local governments equivalent to counties...

 and portions of southern Arkansas
Arkansas
Arkansas is a state located in the southern region of the United States. Its name is an Algonquian name of the Quapaw Indians. Arkansas shares borders with six states , and its eastern border is largely defined by the Mississippi River...

 and Oklahoma
Oklahoma
Oklahoma is a state located in the South Central region of the United States of America. With an estimated 3,751,351 residents as of the 2010 census and a land area of 68,667 square miles , Oklahoma is the 28th most populous and 20th-largest state...

. Today the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma is a cohesive tribe with its capital at Binger, Oklahoma
Binger, Oklahoma
Binger is a town in Caddo County, Oklahoma, United States. The population was 708 at the 2000 census.Binger is the headquarters of the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma, who were settled here in the 1870s....

. The different Caddo languages have converged into a single language.

Government and civic institutions

The Caddo Nation is a federally recognized tribe. They were previously known as the Caddo Tribe of Oklahoma. A tribal constitution provides for a tribal council consisting of eight members with a chairperson, based in Binger, Oklahoma. The tribal complex, dance grounds, and the Caddo Heritage Museum are located south of Binger. 5000 people are enrolled in the tribe, with 2500 living within the state of Oklahoma. The tribe operates its own housing authority and issues its own tribal vehicle tags. It maintains administrative centers, dance grounds, several community centers, and an active NAGPRA office.

Several programs exist to invigorate Caddo traditions. The tribe sponsors a summer culture camp for children. The Hasinai Society and Caddo Culture Club both keep Caddo songs and dances alive, while the Kiwat Hasinay Foundation is dedicated to preserving the Caddo language.

Current tribal officials

  • Chairperson: Brenda Shemayme Edwards
  • Vice-chairperson: Todd Downing Goodman
  • Secretary: Diane Sparks
  • Treasurer: Laura Sue Butler Jarvis
  • Representative, Fort Cobb: Eloise Harjo
  • Representative, Anadarko: Anna Donaghey
  • Representative, Binger: Marilyn Williams Threlkeld
  • Representative, Oklahoma City: Jennifer Reeder Crump

Archaeology

The Caddo are thought to be an extension of Woodland period
Woodland period
The Woodland period of North American pre-Columbian cultures was from roughly 1000 BCE to 1000 CE in the eastern part of North America. The term "Woodland Period" was introduced in the 1930s as a generic header for prehistoric sites falling between the Archaic hunter-gatherers and the...

 peoples, the Fourche Maline culture
Fourche Maline culture
The Fourche Maline culture was a Woodland Period Native American culture that existed from 300 BCE to 800 CE, in southeastern Oklahoma, southwestern Arkansas, northwestern Louisiana, and northeastern Texas. They are considered to be one of the main ancestral groups of the Caddoan Mississippian...

 and Mossy Grove cultures who were living in the area of Arkansas, Louisiana, and Texas between 200 BCE to 800 CE. The Wichita and Pawnee are related to the Caddo, as shown by their speaking Caddoan languages. By 800 CE this society had begun to coalesce into the Caddoan Mississippian culture
Caddoan Mississippian culture
The Caddoan Mississippian culture was a prehistoric Native American culture considered by archaeologists as a variant of the Mississippian culture. The Caddoan Mississippians covered a large territory, including what is now Eastern Oklahoma, Western Arkansas, Northeast Texas, and Northwest Louisiana...

. Some villages began to gain prominence as ritual centers, with elite residences and temple mound
Platform mound
A platform mound is any earthwork or mound intended to support a structure or activity.-Eastern North America:The indigenous peoples of North America built substructure mounds for well over a thousand years starting in the Archaic period and continuing through the Woodland period...

 constructions. The mounds were arranged around open plaza
Plaza
Plaza is a Spanish word related to "field" which describes an open urban public space, such as a city square. All through Spanish America, the plaza mayor of each center of administration held three closely related institutions: the cathedral, the cabildo or administrative center, which might be...

s, which were usually kept swept clean and were often used for ceremonial occasions. As complex religious and social ideas developed, some people and family lineages gained prominence over others. By 1000 CE a society that is defined as "Caddoan" had emerged. By 1200 the numerous villages, hamlets, and farmsteads established throughout the Caddo world had begun extensive maize
Maize
Maize known in many English-speaking countries as corn or mielie/mealie, is a grain domesticated by indigenous peoples in Mesoamerica in prehistoric times. The leafy stalk produces ears which contain seeds called kernels. Though technically a grain, maize kernels are used in cooking as a vegetable...

 agriculture. Their artistic skills and earthwork mound-building flourished during the 12th and 13th centuries. Spiro mounds
Spiro Mounds
Spiro Mounds is an important pre-Columbian Caddoan Mississippian culture archaeological site located in present-day eastern Oklahoma in the United States. The site is located seven miles north of Spiro, and is the only prehistoric Native American archaeological site in Oklahoma open to the public...

, some of the most elaborate in the United States, were made by ancestors of the Caddo and Wichita
Wichita (tribe)
The Wichita people are indigenous inhabitants of North America, who traditionally spoke the Wichita language, a Caddoan language. They have lived in Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas...

. The Caddo were farmers and enjoyed good growing conditions most of the time. However, the Pineywoods were affected by the Great Drought, from 1276–1299 CE.

Archeological evidence that the cultural continuity is unbroken from prehistory to the present, and that the direct ancestors of the Caddo and related Caddo language
Caddoan languages
The Caddoan languages are a family of Native American languages. They are spoken by Native Americans in parts of the Great Plains of the central United States, from North Dakota south to Oklahoma.-Family division:...

 speakers in prehistoric times and at first European contact and the modern Caddo Nation of Oklahoma is unquestioned today.

Oral history

Caddo oral history
Oral history
Oral history is the collection and study of historical information about individuals, families, important events, or everyday life using audiotapes, videotapes, or transcriptions of planned interviews...

 says the tribe emerged from an underground cave, called Chahkanina or "the place of crying," located at the confluence of the Red
Red River (Mississippi watershed)
The Red River, or sometimes the Red River of the South, is a major tributary of the Mississippi and Atchafalaya Rivers in the southern United States of America. The river gains its name from the red-bed country of its watershed. It is one of several rivers with that name...

 and Mississippi River
Mississippi River
The Mississippi River is the largest river system in North America. Flowing entirely in the United States, this river rises in western Minnesota and meanders slowly southwards for to the Mississippi River Delta at the Gulf of Mexico. With its many tributaries, the Mississippi's watershed drains...

s in northern Louisiana. Their leader, named Moon, instructed the people not to look back. An old Caddo man carried with him a drum, a pipe, and fire, all of which continued to be important religious items. His wife carried corn and pumpkin seeds. As people and accompanying animals emerged, the wolf looked back and the exit was closed to the remaining people and animals.

The Caddo peoples moved west along the Red River, or Bah'hatteno in Caddo. A Caddo woman, Zacado, instructed the tribe in hunting, fishing, home construction, and clothing. Caddo religion focuses on Kadhi háyuh, translating to "Lord Above" or "Lord of the Sky." In early times, the people were led by priests, including a head priest, the xinesi, who could commune with spirits residing near Caddo temples. A cycle of ceremonies corresponded to corn cultivation. Tobacco
Nicotiana rustica
Nicotiana rustica, known in South America as Mapacho and in Vietnam as Thuoc Lao , is a plant in the Solanaceae family. It is a very potent variety of tobacco. The high concentration of nicotine in its leaves makes it useful for creating organic pesticides.Rustica is also used for entheogenic...

 was and is used ceremonially. Early priests drank a purifying sacrament made of wild olive leaves.

Geography

The Caddo lived in the Piney Woods
Piney Woods
The Piney Woods is a temperate coniferous forest terrestrial ecoregion in the Southern United States covering of East Texas, southern Arkansas, western Louisiana, and southeastern Oklahoma. These coniferous forests are dominated by several species of pine as well as hardwoods including hickory and...

 eco-region of the United States up to the foothills of the Ozark Mountains and often near the Caddo River
Caddo River
The Caddo River is a tributary of the Ouachita River in the U.S. state of Arkansas. The river is about long altogther.-Course:The Caddo River flows out of the Ouachita Mountains through Montgomery, Pike, and Clark counties in Arkansas before flowing into DeGray Lake and then to its terminus at the...

. The Piney Woods is a dense forest of deciduous
Deciduous
Deciduous means "falling off at maturity" or "tending to fall off", and is typically used in reference to trees or shrubs that lose their leaves seasonally, and to the shedding of other plant structures such as petals after flowering or fruit when ripe...

 and conifer flora covering rolling hills, steep river valleys, and intermittent wetland
Wetland
A wetland is an area of land whose soil is saturated with water either permanently or seasonally. Wetlands are categorised by their characteristic vegetation, which is adapted to these unique soil conditions....

s called Bayous. Several Caddo villages were resettled, including the community of Elysian Fields, Texas
Elysian Fields, Texas
Elysian Fields is a rural unincorporated community in Harrison County, Texas, United States. It lies 11 miles southeast of the county seat of Marshall....

, and Nacogdoches
Nacogdoches, Texas
Nacogdoches is a city in Nacogdoches County, Texas, in the United States. The 2010 census recorded the city's population to be 32,996. It is the county seat of Nacogdoches County and is situated in East Texas. Nacogdoches is a sister city of Natchitoches, Louisiana.Nacogdoches is the home of...

 and Natchitoches
Natchitoches, Louisiana
Natchitoches is a city in and the parish seat of Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana, United States. Established in 1714 by Louis Juchereau de St. Denis as part of French Louisiana, the community was named after the Natchitoches Indian tribe. The City of Natchitoches was first incorporated on February...

, both of which have kept their original names. The Caddo were progressively moved further west until they reached what is now western Oklahoma. The geography of the drier plains was quite a contrast to the lush hilly forest that were formerly their homeland. The Caddo's food varied in many types, the most common being dried corn. Sunflower seeds and pumpkins were also important staples with cultural significance, as were wild turkey
Wild Turkey
The Wild Turkey is native to North America and is the heaviest member of the Galliformes. It is the same species as the domestic turkey, which derives from the South Mexican subspecies of wild turkey .Adult wild turkeys have long reddish-yellow to grayish-green...

s.

Post-contact history

The Caddo first encountered Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

ans in 1541 when the Hernando de Soto
Hernando de Soto (explorer)
Hernando de Soto was a Spanish explorer and conquistador who, while leading the first European expedition deep into the territory of the modern-day United States, was the first European documented to have crossed the Mississippi River....

 Expedition came through their lands. De Soto's force had a violent clash with one band of Caddo Indians, the Tula
Tula tribe
The Tula were a Native American tribe that lived in what is now western Arkansas.-History:The Tula are known to history only from the chronicles of Spanish conquistador Hernando de Soto's exploits in the interior of North America....

, near Caddo Gap, Arkansas
Caddo Gap, Arkansas
Caddo Gap is a small unincorporated community in Montgomery County, Arkansas, United States. It lies between Glenwood and Norman on the Caddo River. It is best known as the area in which explorer Hernando de Soto and his forces clashed with the Tula tribe, a band loosely affiliated with the Caddo...

. This event is marked by a monument that stands in the small town today.

The Caddo tribes were divided into three confederacies when first encountered by the Europeans, the Hasinai, Kadohadacho, and Natchitoches, and loosely affiliated with other tribes. The Haisinai lived in East Texas
East Texas
East Texas is a distinct geographic and ecological area in the U.S. state of Texas.According to the Handbook of Texas, the East Texas area "may be separated from the rest of Texas roughly by a line extending from the Red River in north central Lamar County southwestward to east central Limestone...

, the Kadohadacho lived near the border of Texas, Oklahoma
Oklahoma
Oklahoma is a state located in the South Central region of the United States of America. With an estimated 3,751,351 residents as of the 2010 census and a land area of 68,667 square miles , Oklahoma is the 28th most populous and 20th-largest state...

, and Arkansas
Arkansas
Arkansas is a state located in the southern region of the United States. Its name is an Algonquian name of the Quapaw Indians. Arkansas shares borders with six states , and its eastern border is largely defined by the Mississippi River...

, and the Natchitoches lived in now northern Louisiana
Louisiana
Louisiana is a state located in the southern region of the United States of America. Its capital is Baton Rouge and largest city is New Orleans. Louisiana is the only state in the U.S. with political subdivisions termed parishes, which are local governments equivalent to counties...

.

With the arrival of missionaries
Missionary
A missionary is a member of a religious group sent into an area to do evangelism or ministries of service, such as education, literacy, social justice, health care and economic development. The word "mission" originates from 1598 when the Jesuits sent members abroad, derived from the Latin...

 from Spain
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 and France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

, a smallpox
Smallpox
Smallpox was an infectious disease unique to humans, caused by either of two virus variants, Variola major and Variola minor. The disease is also known by the Latin names Variola or Variola vera, which is a derivative of the Latin varius, meaning "spotted", or varus, meaning "pimple"...

 epidemic
Epidemic
In epidemiology, an epidemic , occurs when new cases of a certain disease, in a given human population, and during a given period, substantially exceed what is expected based on recent experience...

 broke out that decimated the population. Measles
Measles
Measles, also known as rubeola or morbilli, is an infection of the respiratory system caused by a virus, specifically a paramyxovirus of the genus Morbillivirus. Morbilliviruses, like other paramyxoviruses, are enveloped, single-stranded, negative-sense RNA viruses...

, influenza
Influenza
Influenza, commonly referred to as the flu, is an infectious disease caused by RNA viruses of the family Orthomyxoviridae , that affects birds and mammals...

, and malaria
Malaria
Malaria is a mosquito-borne infectious disease of humans and other animals caused by eukaryotic protists of the genus Plasmodium. The disease results from the multiplication of Plasmodium parasites within red blood cells, causing symptoms that typically include fever and headache, in severe cases...

 also devastated the Caddo, as these were Eurasian diseases to which they had no immunity.

Before extensive European contact, some of the Caddo territory was invaded by migrating Osage
Osage Nation
The Osage Nation is a Native American Siouan-language tribe in the United States that originated in the Ohio River valley in present-day Kentucky. After years of war with invading Iroquois, the Osage migrated west of the Mississippi River to their historic lands in present-day Arkansas, Missouri,...

, Ponca
Ponca
The Ponca are a Native American people of the Dhegihan branch of the Siouan-language group. There are two federally recognized Ponca tribes: the Ponca Tribe of Nebraska and the Ponca Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma...

, Omaha and Kaw, who had moved west beginning about 1200 CE because of years of warfare with the Iroquois
Iroquois
The Iroquois , also known as the Haudenosaunee or the "People of the Longhouse", are an association of several tribes of indigenous people of North America...

 in the Ohio River
Ohio River
The Ohio River is the largest tributary, by volume, of the Mississippi River. At the confluence, the Ohio is even bigger than the Mississippi and, thus, is hydrologically the main stream of the whole river system, including the Allegheny River further upstream...

 area of present-day Kentucky
Kentucky
The Commonwealth of Kentucky is a state located in the East Central United States of America. As classified by the United States Census Bureau, Kentucky is a Southern state, more specifically in the East South Central region. Kentucky is one of four U.S. states constituted as a commonwealth...

. The Osage particularly dominated the Caddo and pushed them out of some former territory, becoming dominant in the region of Missouri
Missouri
Missouri is a US state located in the Midwestern United States, bordered by Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska. With a 2010 population of 5,988,927, Missouri is the 18th most populous state in the nation and the fifth most populous in the Midwest. It...

, Arkansas
Arkansas
Arkansas is a state located in the southern region of the United States. Its name is an Algonquian name of the Quapaw Indians. Arkansas shares borders with six states , and its eastern border is largely defined by the Mississippi River...

, Kansas
Kansas
Kansas is a US state located in the Midwestern United States. It is named after the Kansas River which flows through it, which in turn was named after the Kansa Native American tribe, which inhabited the area. The tribe's name is often said to mean "people of the wind" or "people of the south...

 and Oklahoma. The new tribes had become well settled in their new traditional grounds west of the Mississippi by mid-18th century European contact.

Having given way over years before the power of the former Ohio Valley tribes, Caddos later negotiated for place with Spanish, French, and finally Anglo-American settlers. After the 1803 Louisiana Purchase
Louisiana Purchase
The Louisiana Purchase was the acquisition by the United States of America of of France's claim to the territory of Louisiana in 1803. The U.S...

, the United States government sought to ally with the Caddos. In 1835 the Kadohadacho, the northernmost Caddo confederacy, signed a treaty with the US to relocate to then Mexico
Mexico
The United Mexican States , commonly known as Mexico , is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of...

. This area had been rapidly transformed by greatly increased immigration of European Americans, who in 1836 declared independence from Mexico with the Republic of Texas
Republic of Texas
The Republic of Texas was an independent nation in North America, bordering the United States and Mexico, that existed from 1836 to 1846.Formed as a break-away republic from Mexico by the Texas Revolution, the state claimed borders that encompassed an area that included all of the present U.S...

. "Texas" comes from the Hasinai word táysha?, meaning "friend."

In 1845 when Texas was admitted to the US as a state, the government forced the relocation of both the Hasinai and the Kadohadacho onto the Brazos Reservation. In 1859 many of the Caddo were relocated to Indian Territory
Indian Territory
The Indian Territory, also known as the Indian Territories and the Indian Country, was land set aside within the United States for the settlement of American Indians...

 west of the Mississippi River
Mississippi River
The Mississippi River is the largest river system in North America. Flowing entirely in the United States, this river rises in western Minnesota and meanders slowly southwards for to the Mississippi River Delta at the Gulf of Mexico. With its many tributaries, the Mississippi's watershed drains...

. After the Civil War
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

, the Caddo were concentrated on a reservation located between the Washita
Washita River
The Washita River is a river in Texas and Oklahoma, United States. The river is long and terminates into Lake Texoma in Johnston County , Oklahoma and the Red River.-Geography:...

 and Canadian
Canadian River
The Canadian River is the longest tributary of the Arkansas River. It is about long, starting in Colorado and traveling through New Mexico, the Texas Panhandle, and most of Oklahoma....

 rivers.

In the late 19th century, the Caddo took up the Ghost Dance
Ghost Dance
The Ghost Dance was a new religious movement which was incorporated into numerous Native American belief systems. The traditional ritual used in the Ghost Dance, the circle dance, has been used by many Native Americans since prehistoric times...

 religion, which was widespread among American Indian nations in the West
Western world
The Western world, also known as the West and the Occident , is a term referring to the countries of Western Europe , the countries of the Americas, as well all countries of Northern and Central Europe, Australia and New Zealand...

. John Wilson
John Wilson (Caddo)
John Wilson was a Caddo-Delaware-French medicine man and religious leader.John Wilson's Caddo name was Nishkû'ntu, meaning "Moon Head." Though he was of half-Delaware descent, John Wilson spoke only the Caddo language and identified only as a Caddo. In 1890, he became an influential leader in the...

, a Caddo-Delaware
Lenape
The Lenape are an Algonquian group of Native Americans of the Northeastern Woodlands. They are also called Delaware Indians. As a result of the American Revolutionary War and later Indian removals from the eastern United States, today the main groups live in Canada, where they are enrolled in the...

 medicine man who spoke only Caddo
Caddo language
Caddo is the only surviving Southern Caddoan language of the Caddo language family. It is spoken by the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma. Today, only 25 elderly speakers are estimated to remain, none of whom are monolingual Caddo speakers, making Caddo a critically endangered language...

, was an influential leader in the Ghost Dance. In 1880, Wilson became a peyote
Peyote
Lophophora williamsii , better known by its common name Peyote , is a small, spineless cactus with psychoactive alkaloids, particularly mescaline.It is native to southwestern Texas and Mexico...

roadman. The tribe had known the Half Moon peyote ceremony, but Wilson introduced the Big Moon ceremony to them. The Caddo tribe remains very active in the Native American Church
Native American Church
Native American Church, a religious denomination which practices Peyotism or the Peyote religion, originated in the U.S. state of Oklahoma, and is the most widespread indigenous religion among Native Americans in the United States...

 today.

After the turn of the century, the Curtis Act dismantled tribal institutions. The Dawes Act
Dawes Act
The Dawes Act, adopted by Congress in 1887, authorized the President of the United States to survey Indian tribal land and divide the land into allotments for individual Indians. The Act was named for its sponsor, Senator Henry L. Dawes of Massachusetts. The Dawes Act was amended in 1891 and again...

 was directed at assimilation by breaking up tribal common landholdings into allotments for individual members. The Caddo vigorously opposed allotment. Whitebread, a Caddo leader, said, that "because of their peaceful lives and friendship to the white man, and through their ignorance were not consulted, and have been ignored and stuck away in a corner and allowed to exist by sufferance."

The Oklahoma Indian Welfare Act
Oklahoma Indian Welfare Act
The Oklahoma Indian Welfare Act of 1936, also known as the Thomas-Rogers Act, is a United States federal law that extended the US Indian Reorganization Act of 1934. It sought to return some form of tribal government to the many tribes in former Indian Territory...

 of 1936 provided the opportunity for the Caddo to reform their tribal government. They organized in 1938 as the Caddo Indian Tribe of Oklahoma. They ratified their constitution on 17 January 1938. In 1976, they drafted a new constitution. During the 20th century, Caddo leaders such as Melford Williams, Harry Guy, Hubert Halfmoon, and Vernon Hunter have shaped the tribe.

In a special election on 29 June 2002, six amendments were made to the constitution. Tribal enrollment is open to individuals with a documented minimum of 1/16 degree Caddo blood.



Notable Caddo

  • T. C. Cannon
    T. C. Cannon
    Tommy Wayne Cannon was an important Native American artist of the 20th century. An enrolled member of the Kiowa Tribe and of Caddo, French, and Choctaw descent, he was popularly known as T.C...

    , Kiowa-Caddo-Choctaw artist
  • LaRue Parker
    LaRue Parker
    Sundra LaRue Martin Parker was the former Chairperson of the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma. She served as chairperson as early as 2000, and was re-elected over opposition candidate, Christine Smith Noah, in the July 9, 2005 election. In 2009, Park was succeeded in the position by Brenda Shemayme...

    , former tribal chairperson
  • John Wilson
    John Wilson (Caddo)
    John Wilson was a Caddo-Delaware-French medicine man and religious leader.John Wilson's Caddo name was Nishkû'ntu, meaning "Moon Head." Though he was of half-Delaware descent, John Wilson spoke only the Caddo language and identified only as a Caddo. In 1890, he became an influential leader in the...

    , peyote roadman

See also

  • Caddoan village bundle
    Caddoan village bundle
    A village bundle is a bundle or basket filled with ceremonial objects. It represents the spiritual and social organization of the village or community to which it belongs. These are associated with Native American groups including the Caddoan farming villages...

  • Caddo Lake
    Caddo Lake
    Caddo Lake is a lake and wetland located on the border between Texas and Louisiana, in northern Harrison County and southern Marion County in Texas and western Caddo Parish in Louisiana. The lake is named after the Southeastern culture of Native Americans called Caddoans or Caddo, who lived in...

  • Dush-toh
    Dush-toh
    A dush-toh, also spelled dush-too, dush-tooh, or dush-tuh, is a traditional Caddo hair ornament worn by girls and women during dances, particularly the Turkey Dance....

    , traditional Caddo women's hair ornament
  • List of sites and peoples visited by the Hernando de Soto Expedition
  • Spiro Mounds
    Spiro Mounds
    Spiro Mounds is an important pre-Columbian Caddoan Mississippian culture archaeological site located in present-day eastern Oklahoma in the United States. The site is located seven miles north of Spiro, and is the only prehistoric Native American archaeological site in Oklahoma open to the public...


External links

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