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Blackfoot Indians of Missouri

Q: We are trying to locate some Blackfoot Indian folks who may have settled in Mo. In particular a place called Blackfoot Mo. Do you have any info on that. Also we think and have been told that some of our Grandparents were from that tribe. Can you be of help to us in where we might go for additional information.

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A: The Blackfoot Indian tribe was never relocated. They are people of the Northern Plains--Montana and Alberta, Canada--where they still live to this day.

It's possible that a Blackfoot Indian individual may have moved south and been responsible for the founding of this town, but it's more likely that the town was named after local "Southern Blackfoot" Indians. This term became popular in the 1800's throughout the southern states and its origins are unclear, but it probably referred to people of mixed Indian and African heritage. It could have been a racial slur of some sort (white neighbors gave mixed-race Indians all kinds of weird names including "brass ankles" and "redbones"), or it could have been a kind of code word among the African-American community (who used lots of code words like this in the 1800's, remember Missouri was a slave state), or it could have been some sort of clan name (possibly of the Saponi people). Wherever the term came from, you may want to look into "Melungeon" people in Missouri. Melungeon is a general term for mixed-race Indians of uncertain origin living throughout the greater Appalachian area, and it's likely that any "Blackfoot" people in Missouri, probably belonged to this group.

Good luck with your search!
Native Languages of the Americas

Related Links

 Cherokee-Blackfoot Indians
 Siksika language
 Blackfoot writing
 Blackfoot Indians
 Indians in Missouri history

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