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(chŏk`tô), Native North Americans whose language belongs to the Muskogean branch of the Hokan-Siouan linguistic stock (see Native American languagesNative American languages,
languages of the native peoples of the Western Hemisphere and their descendants. A number of the Native American languages that were spoken at the time of the European arrival in the New World in the late 15th cent.
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). They formerly occupied central and S Mississippi with some outlying groups in Alabama, Georgia, and Louisiana. Choctaw culture was similar to that of the Creek and Chickasaw, who were their enemies in repeated wars. The Choctaw economy was based on agriculture, and the Choctaw were perhaps the most competent farmers in the Southeast. Friendly toward the French colonists, the Choctaw were their allies in wars against other tribes. After being forced to cede their lands in Alabama and Mississippi, they moved (1832) to the Indian TerritoryIndian Territory,
in U.S. history, name applied to the country set aside for Native Americans by the Indian Intercourse Act (1834). In the 1820s, the federal government began moving the Five Civilized Tribes (Cherokee, Creek, Seminole, Choctaw, and Chickasaw) of the Southeast to
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 in Oklahoma, where they became one of the Five Civilized Tribes. In 1990 there were over 85,000 Choctaw in the United States, with more than half living in Oklahoma.


See A. Debo, The Rise and Fall of the Choctaw Republic (3d ed. 1967); A. H. DeRosier, The Removal of the Choctaw Indians (1971); W. D. Baird, Peter Pitchlynn: Chief of the Choctaws (1972); C. K. Reeves, The Choctaw Before Removal (1985).

References in periodicals archive ?
In 1883, the Choctaw signed a treaty with the federal government granting citizenship only to those blacks who were in the nation at the signing of the 1866 treaty as well as sharply limiting black citizenship rights.
None of these removals was successful at vacating all Mississippi Choctaws but then along came Massachusetts Senator Henry L.
Howe references mound-building by Choctaws and earlier Mississippean peoples in her works: the Nanih Waiya mound in Mississippi, the Choctaw emergence site according to tribal oral histories, is central to the plot of Shell Shaker, and Miko Kings notes the existence of "old ballfields along river bottoms and next to mound sites" (127).
A Kentuckian by origin, William Fry settled with the Choctaws during the American Revolutionary era.
Little Mo--whose name is actually Moses--hurries ahead to ask for help from the Choctaws, and Martha Tom's mother agrees.
In 2002, Reed rallied Religious Right leaders to oppose a new casino proposed by the Jena Band of Choctaw Indians in Louisiana.
Grateful pale-faced Galway folk are paying the Choctaw Indians back after their homes were hit by Hurricane Katrina.
To celebrate this friendship, Mississippians are invited to attend the Choctaw Indian Fair, held on the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians Reservation in Choctaw, July 9-12.
The Choctaws, far from resisting Christianity, invited Christian missionaries to teach them what they knew, including the contents of the Bible, and how to read and write (Kidwell, 1995).
Although, up to 1763, they mainly allied with French colonists on the Gulf coast against the British and their Chickasaw allies, periodic shortages of French goods and factionalism among chiefs of the traditional Eastern, Western, and Southern divisions led some Choctaws to turn to the British.
Amerindian relations, that of the Mississippi Band of Choctaws (perhaps best documented in Peter J.
But only the largest tribes--most Creeks, most Choctaws, and the pragmatic Chickasaws, actively opposed and actually removed.