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.
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