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The Chickasaws' Place-World: The Mississippi River in Chickasaw History and Geography

The Chickasaws' Place-World: The Mississippi River in Chickasaw History and Geography Th e Chickasaws’ Place- World Th e Mississippi River in Chickasaw History and Geography Dustin J. Mack For over three hundred years Chickasaws have employed the Mississippi River to defi ne their geographic homeland and history. Th roughout the eighteenth and into the early nineteenth century this waterway delineated the western limits of Chickasaw Country. Chickasaw storytellers used the Mississippi to split west from east, while Chickasaw names for the river demarcated north and south. Th e Mississippi River divided time as well. According to Chickasaw migration stories, proto- Chickasaws crossed the Mississippi, traveling west to east, and thereaft er the river marked a new era— the beginning of Chickasaw history. Other Chickasaw cultural constructs, like maps and titles, also demonstrate how the Mississippi functioned as a unifying symbol. In all these ways and more, the Mississippi River simultaneously served as a physical landmark and cultural touchpoint for the Chickasaw people. Th e importance Chickasaws placed on the Mississippi has been overlooked, and clear interpretations of the past require contextualization within particular place- worlds. Th is understanding necessitates a reevaluation of Chickasaw activities and relationships along the waterway. Chickasaw villages sat nearly one hundred miles east of the Mississippi, http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Native South uni_neb

The Chickasaws' Place-World: The Mississippi River in Chickasaw History and Geography

Native South , Volume 11 – Jul 31, 2018

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Publisher
University of Nebraska Press
ISSN
2152-4025

Abstract

Th e Chickasaws’ Place- World Th e Mississippi River in Chickasaw History and Geography Dustin J. Mack For over three hundred years Chickasaws have employed the Mississippi River to defi ne their geographic homeland and history. Th roughout the eighteenth and into the early nineteenth century this waterway delineated the western limits of Chickasaw Country. Chickasaw storytellers used the Mississippi to split west from east, while Chickasaw names for the river demarcated north and south. Th e Mississippi River divided time as well. According to Chickasaw migration stories, proto- Chickasaws crossed the Mississippi, traveling west to east, and thereaft er the river marked a new era— the beginning of Chickasaw history. Other Chickasaw cultural constructs, like maps and titles, also demonstrate how the Mississippi functioned as a unifying symbol. In all these ways and more, the Mississippi River simultaneously served as a physical landmark and cultural touchpoint for the Chickasaw people. Th e importance Chickasaws placed on the Mississippi has been overlooked, and clear interpretations of the past require contextualization within particular place- worlds. Th is understanding necessitates a reevaluation of Chickasaw activities and relationships along the waterway. Chickasaw villages sat nearly one hundred miles east of the Mississippi,

Journal

Native Southuni_neb

Published: Jul 31, 2018

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