AREA TRIBES

HISTORICAL ARKANSAS AND MISSOURI TRIBES

The following list is limited to major Indian Tribes with historical connections to the area of the present states of Arkansas and Missouri. Pre-historical tribes are not included, nor are those which are only mentioned briefly in the earliest accounts of European explorers.   The description of each tribe is a short synopsis only.  Visitors to this website should make a more in-depth research on any specific tribe or tribes that they might be interested in.  There are currently no Federally Recognized Tribes headquartered in either Arkansas or Missouri, nor do the two states have a tribal recognition process.   Addresses for current tribal headquarters are provided to enable you to contact a tribe if necessary.

Caddo  Cherokee  Chickasaw  Choctaw 
Delaware
  Illinois  Kickapoo  Osage 
Ote-Missouria
Sauk-Fox Shawnee Tunica

Caddo - The Caddo lived in several tribal groups in southwest Arkansas and nearby areas of Texas, Louisiana, and Oklahoma from A.D. 1000 to about A.D. 1800.  By the early 1800s most of the Indians in the area  had migrated to Texas. Later difficulties with the Texans led to their removal, in 1859, to Western Oklahoma. Within historic times no Caddoan tribe is known to have lived within the limits of the present State of Missouri, but occupancy by Caddo is indicated by certain archeological remains in the extreme southwestern section. 

Caddo Nation
PO Box 487
Binger, OK 73009
Toll-Free: (888) 430-8277
Phone: (405) 656-2344
Fax: (405) 656-2892

Cherokee -  The Cherokee are perhaps the most studied and documented of all American Indian people. For a brief period they were fairly numerous in Arkansas. The first Cherokees who moved into the Arkansas area were the “Old Settler Cherokees”, those who moved West prior to being forcibly removed from their lands in the East. Most of these families settled first along the St, Francis River in NE Arkansas, then they moved to the area of the Arkansas River in the area of Russellville and up the White River to the vicinity of Harrison. A Cherokee Reservation was established around 1817, and was roughly cornered by the present towns of Batesville, Harrison, Ft. Smith, and Morrison. This reservation was re-ceded to the U.S. Government in 1828 and the Cherokees were moved to Oklahoma. In 1838-1839 approximately 18,000 Cherokees were removed from their Eastern lands and passed through Arkansas and Missouri to Oklahoma on the “Trail of Tears” - during which an estimated 4,000 Cherokees died. Warning! There are over 200 organizations/tribes claiming to be Cherokee. There are only three federally recognized Cherokee Tribes: the Cherokee Nation and the United Keetoowah Band of Oklahoma, and the Eastern Band of Cherokee in North Carolina. We advise individuals to contact one these three tribes before becoming involved in a fraudulent scheme.

Cherokee Nation
Attn: (Department Name)
P. O. Box 948
Tahlequah, OK 74465
918-456-0671
(OK Toll Free) 1-800-256-0671

United Keetoowah Band
2450 S. Muskogee
Tahlequah, OK 74464
(918) 431-1818

Eastern Band of the Cherokee
P.O. Box 455
Cherokee, North Carolina 28719
Phone: (704) 497-2771

Chickasaw - The Chickasaw owned no land in Arkansas, but traders, hunting and raiding parties frequented the area. Several thousand Chickasaw moved through Arkansas during removal. During 1862, Confederate Chickasaw units fought at Pea Ridge (Elkhorn Tavern).

Chickasaw Nation
P.O. Box 1548
Ada, OK 74280
Phone: (405) 436-2603
FAX: (405) 436-4287

Choctaw - The Choctaw had a village on the lower course of Arkansas River in 1805 and they owned a large strip of territory in the western part of the State, granted to them by the treaty of Doak's Stand, October 18, 1820. They surrendered the latter in a treaty concluded at Washington, January 20, 1825.  Thousands of Choctaw moved through Arkansas from other states during the Choctaw Trail of Tears.

Choctaw Nation
P.O. Drawer 1210
16th & Locust St
Durant, OK 74702
(580) 924-8280 or 1-800-522-6170
Fax:  924-1150

Quapaw - The Quapaw once were a division of a larger group known as the Dhegiha Sioux. They split into the tribes known today as the Quapaw; Osage; Ponca; Kansa; and Omaha when they left the Ohio Valley. They were also called Akansa, or Arkansas, by the Illinois and other Algonquian speaking Indians, a name probably derived from one of the Quapaw social subdivisions. The Quapaw moved down the Mississippi River into Arkansas, displacing the Tunica and the Illinois. When the Louisiana Purchase occurred in 1803, the United States came into control of the Quapaw and their territory. When Jefferson purchased the Louisiana Territory, he planned to use the area as a place to send all of the eastern tribes. This meant that tribes already there had to be moved further west. This desire to provide a homeland for eastern tribes like the Cherokee and Choctaw, along with the fact that the Quapaw tribal population had dramatically declined due to disease, prompted the government in 1818 to obtain from the Quapaw a cession of land encompassing all of what is now southern Arkansas, Oklahoma, and part of Louisiana,. The only tract of land that remained was a small parcel situated on the south side of the Arkansas River between Little Rock and Arkansas Post, but the Quapaw lost half of this either by design or through error in the transcription of the treaty for the United States Congress.

Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma
P.O. Box 765
Quapaw, OK 74363

Delaware - In 1818, the Delaware remaining in Indiana signed the St. Mary’s Treaty ceding all their land in Indiana and agreed to move west of the Mississippi. The Wea and Piankashaw divisions of the Miami were also parties to that treaty and eventually about 500 from those divisions settled with the Delaware in Missouri. They were given land in southwest Missouri and moved to the James River in that area between 1820 and 1822. A town was established on the James about ten miles southwest of Springfield, but other villages were scattered up and down the James and on the banks of Wilson’s Creek.

Delaware Tribal Headquarters
220 N.W. Virginia
Bartlesville, OK 74003
(918)336-5272

Illinois - When Europeans first descended the Mississippi an Illinois division known as Michigamea, "Big Water", was settled in northeastern Arkansas by a lake known by their name, possibly  the present Big Lake in Mississippi County. They had probably come from the region of now the State of Illinois only a short time before, perhaps from a village entered on some maps as "the old village of the Michigamea." Toward the end of the seventeenth century they were driven north again by the Quapaw or Chickasaw and united with the cognate Kaskaskia. The descendants of the Illinois are the members of the Peoria Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma, a confederation of Kaskaskia, Peoria, Piankesaw and Wea Indians who were united into a single tribe in 1854. Forced from their ancestral lands in Illinois, Michigan, Ohio and Missouri, the Peorias were relocated first in Missouri, then in Kansas and, finally, in northeastern Oklahoma. 

The Peoria Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma
118 S. Eight Tribes Trail
P.O. Box 1527
Miami, OK 74355
(918) 540-2535  Fax: 540-2538

Kickapoo - Before contact with Europeans, the Kickapoo lived in northwest Ohio and southern Michigan in the area between Lake Erie and Lake Michigan. After wars with the Americans and settlement of the Ohio Valley, they signed treaties during 1819 ceding their remaining land east of the Mississippi River and relocated to southern Missouri (1819-24). Many remained in central Illinois and refused to leave until they were forcibly removed by the military in 1834. Fewer than half actually stayed on their Missouri reserve. Several bands wandered south and west until the Kickapoo were spread across Oklahoma and Texas all the way to the Mexican border (and beyond). In 1832 the Missouri Kickapoo exchanged their reserve for lands in northeast Kansas. Between 1873 and 1878, approximately half of the Mexican Kickapoo returned to the United States and were sent to Oklahoma. Currently, there are three federally-recognized Kickapoo tribes: the Kickapoo of Kansas; the Kickapoo of Oklahoma; and the Kickapoo Traditional Tribe of Texas.

Kickapoo Tribe of Oklahoma
Address: P.O. Box 70
McLoud, OK 74851
Fed/Ex: 400 N. Hwy 102
Phone: (405) 964-2075
Fax: (405) 964-2745

Kickapoo of Kansas Tribal Council
P.O. Box 271
Horton, KS 66439
(785) 486-2131
(785) 486-2801 (fax)

Kickapoo Traditional Tribe Of Texas
HC 1 Box 9700
Eagle Pass, TX 78852
(830) 733-1209

Osage - The Wazhazhe, or Osage Nation, occupied the region between the Missouri and Arkansas Rivers from the Mississippi to the Great Plains. The Osage claimed most of the area in the modern states of Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Arkansas. The Osage began the first of the major land cessions in the Treaty of 1808 that relinquished control of most of Missouri and the northern half of Arkansas. In 1818, the Osage again entered into a treaty to cede a triangular parcel of land in northwest Arkansas and eastern Oklahoma. The tribe ceded the last of the Missouri homelands and central Kansas in the Treaty of 1825 and moved to the remaining homeland in southern Kansas.  Between the years of 1808 and 1872, the Osage homelands that once encompassed a large four state area was reduced to the present reservation in Osage County, Oklahoma. 
 
Osage Nation
627 Grandview
Pawhuska, OK 74056
Toll-Free: (877) 287-5398
Phone: (918) 287-5398
Fax: (918) 287-5398

Otoe-Missouria - According to tradition, the Missouri, Iowa, and Oto separated from the Winnebago at some indefinite period in the past and moved southwest to Iowa River where the Iowa remained, the others continuing to the Missouri, which they reached at the mouth of Grand River. Here, the tribe split again, the Missouri remaining where they were, while the Oto continued on up the Missouri River. The best-known historical location of the Missouri was on the river which bears their name on the south bank near the mouth of Grand River.
 
Otoe-Missouria Tribe
8151 Hwy 177
Red Rock, OK 74651
Phone: (580) 723-4466
Fax: (580) 723-4273

Sauk-Fox - The Sauk and Fox were originally two distinct groups located in Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, and Nebraska. The treaty of 1815 officially named the Sauk and Fox Nation of Missouri as a distinct tribe and some were moved to Northeast Missouri from Iowa and Illinois. In 1824, the Sac and Fox Nation of Missouri were removed to the Platte Valley northwest of the Missouri river along with the Iowa, Potawatomi and Kickapoo tribes. The Treaty of 1837 removed the Sac and Fox Nation of Missouri into Kansas across the Missouri river to the Great Nemaha Reservation in Doniphan and Brown Counties. The Missouri band became officially known as the Sac and Fox Nation of Missouri in Kansas and Nebraska. In 1869 they were again moved to Indian Territory (Oklahoma). The Sac and Fox were united as one tribe under the Indian Reorganization Act as of 1935 and are headquartered in Oklahoma.

The Sac and Fox Nation,
Route 2, Box 246,
Stroud, Oklahoma 74079 

Shawnee - The historic Shawnee People lived throughout the region east of the Mississippi River, centered around today’s states of Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Tennessee. They were a highly mobile, wide-ranging, nomadic people who lived as hunters and planters organized into small bands.  Large groups of Shawnee left Ohio in 1773 and 1779 and settled in southeast Missouri. The Spanish wanted them as a means of checking the Osage and a defense against the Americans east of the Mississippi. Spanish emissaries came to Ohio in 1788 to urge more Shawnee and Delaware to emigrate, and more groups left. In 1793 Baron de Carondelet, the Spanish governor of Louisiana, gave the Missouri Shawnee a 25 mile square land grant near Cape Girardeau. By 1800 the Hathawekela, Kispokotha, and Piqua were in Missouri, and only the Chillicothe and Mequachake remained in Ohio.  Part of the Shawnee at Cape Girardeau moved into present Marion County, Arkansas and built least three towns. On Crooked Creek, less than a mile from Shawneetown (now Yellville) was a village called "Little Shawneetown." There was another near the mouth of Clear Creek, not far from Pyatt, that was called "Upper Shawneetown."

The three federally recognized Shawnee tribes reflect the migrations and removals of the Shawnee divisions or sub-nations.

Shawnee Tribe (Loyal Shawnee)
P.O. Box 189
Miami, OK 74354
(918) 542-2441  Fax: (918) 542-2922
Absentee Shawnee Tribe
P.O. Box 1747
Shawnee, OK 74802
(405) 275-4030 Fax: (273-4534)

Eastern Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma's headquarters is located in West Seneca, OK., but the tribal headquarters mailing address and much of it's activities are located in the Seneca, MO. area.

The Eastern Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma
P.O. Box 350
Seneca, MO 64865
Voice: (918) 666-2435
Fax: (918) 666-3325 

Tunica - French explorers and missionaries in the late 17th century reported Tunica and Koroa villages along the central and lower Arkansas River in eastern Arkansas,  and along the Mississippi River south of its confluence with the Arkansas.  Possible Tunica villages were reported along the Ouachita River in south-central Arkansas. The Tunica and the merged remnants of several neighboring tribes, including the Biloxi, Avoyel, Ofo, and Choctaw , were officially recognized by the United States as the Tunica-Biloxi tribe in 1981.

Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana

151 Melancon Rd.
Marksville, LA 71351-3065 
Phone: (318) 253-9767
Fax: (318) 253-9791

[MISSION] [EDUCATION] [CLASSROOM RESOURCES]

[AREA TRIBES] [BEWARE!] [EVENTS] [LINKS]
 
 
 
 
 
P.O. Box 2556, Bentonville, AR 72712