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Creeks

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CREEKS (named for the same reason as or in translation from their Algonquin name, Muskoki, °creeks," from their many-rivered land), a once powerful confederacy of Gulf In dians, the strongest Indian power south of New York, except the Cherokees. They occu pied a large part of Georgia and Alabama, and formed the largest section of the Muskhogean stock. The Muskogi were the dominant tribe, and their language the lingua franca of the confederacy; others at the outset were the Coosa, Kasihta, Kawita (Coweta), etc.; later came in the Alibamu, Hitchiti, Kosati, Yamasi (Yemassee), Yuchi or Uchee, Natchez and others, and a band of Shawanoes had been in corporated by desire or force. The Seminoles Owanderers") of Florida had broken away from them. They numbered probably 30,000 at their highest. Lying between the English spheres in Georgia, the Spanish in Florida, and the French at Mobile, and in Louisiana, each power bid for their support, and they shifted from side to side; but the destruction of the French power and of Florida 1763— 83, left the English supreme. In 1763 they had 5,860 warriors and 50 towns; the latter of log houses plastered outside with clay, and as with all the Southern tribes, built in an oblong with a space in the centre for public ceremonials, like the classic forum or agora. Their head chief was called mico, besides whom they had a war chief ; no chiefs seem ever to have been deposed, but new ones added, and at last they became so burdensome that their number was limited to 500. In the Revolution the Creeks took the English side, and after it many Southern Tories took refuge among them and kept them stirred up to hostility; Congress had determined on war, but in 1790 the chiefs were induced to visit New York, and made peace for both Upper and Lower Creeks and Seminoles. This did not prevent attempted raids on Nashville and Knoxville 1792-93. A number of treaties were made with them involving cessions of land in the years after 1786; and from 1800 on, a number of them settled in Louisiana, and later in Texas, where they remained on a reserva tion till reunited with the others in 1872. In the War of 1812 the English induced one sec tion of them to rise against the Americans, and they perpetrated the massacre of Fort Mimms, 30 Aug. 1813; hut American vengeance fell on innocent and guilty alike, and the main fighting force was finally defeated and slaughtered out at Horseshoe Bend, 29 March 1814. Over 2,000

warriors had been killed and their lands rav aged and towns burnt, and they submitted. This gave an impetus to the Georgian impatience to have Congress fulfil its promises of buying up the Indian titles and deporting the tribes; but the obstinate refusal of the tribes to consent led to trickery and violence to obtain the result.

(See CHEROKEE; CHEROKEE NATION V. GF.ORCIA).

The party of consent made a treaty 12 Feb. 1825, ceding all their Georgia and part of their Ala bama lands for equivalent lands in Indian Terri tory and $400,000 in cash; it was made through their chief, William McIntosh, who was at once put to death according to their law. But by a treaty of 24 Jan. 1826, at Indian Springs, the complying party ceded most of their Georgia lands, and by 1828 the other section had been bought over to ratify it. In 1836 some of the Creeks joined the United States forces against the Seminoles, but others began raiding. Georgia and Alabama villages. Scott reduced them, and the government at once began deporting them to the Arkansas; 24,594 were removed, and 744 left behind. government tried to Chris tianize and civilize them, but they fiercely re fused either missionaries or schools; especially Christianity, which to them was a badge of their negro slaves. In 1857 they numbered 14,888. In the Civil War they divided, and after three battles the Confederate section drove the other into Kansas, where many perished, and 1,000 entered the United States army. After the war they were forced to cede 3,000,000 acres of land, for $975,000. Their government is the same as that of the Cherokees. The num ber in 1915 was 6,873 of Indian blood. The en tire white, negro and Indian, num bered in 1915, 18,776. At that date the total area of the Creek Nation was 3,079,095 acres, of which 16,016 acres were reserved for town sites, railroad rights of way and other purposes; 2,997,114 acres were allotted to 18,172 citizens and freedmen; and 63,470 acres were sold. The tribal affairs of the Creek Nation, with the ex ception of the completion of equalization pay ments had been disposed of, and the former nation was incorporated in the United States.