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Native American Tribes of Mississippi

Welcome to our Mississippi State Facts section, part of an educational project designed to provide information about indigenous people in different U.S. states. Follow the links to the right of our tribal map for more information about the language, culture and history of each Mississippi tribe, or scroll below the map for Mississippi Indian activities including a wordsearch, fact sheets, and words from the Native American languages of Mississippi. Feel free to print any of these materials out for classroom use!

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American Indians in Mississippi

Did you know the name "Mississippi" is an Algonkian Indian word? It comes from words meaning "big river" in Ojibway and other northern Algonquian languages. The Mississippi River begins in northern Minnesota, where the Ojibway people live, and that is where the name of the river came from. There were never any Ojibway people in the state of Mississippi.

The original inhabitants of the area that is now Mississippi included:

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*The Biloxi Indians
*The Chickasaw Indians
*The Choctaw Indians
*The Houma Indians
*The Natchez Indians
*The Ofo Indians
*The Quapaw Indians
*The Tunica Indians

Most Native Americans were forced to leave Mississippi during the Indian Removals of the 1800's. These tribes are not extinct, but except for the descendants of Mississippi Indians who escaped from Removal, they do not live in Mississippi anymore. They were moved to Indian reservations in Oklahoma and Texas instead. If you click on the link for each tribe, you can find more information about them.

There is one federally recognized Indian tribe in Mississippi today:

*Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians:
101 Industrial Road
Choctaw, MS 39350

Other Indian tribes, bands and communities remaining in Mississippi today include:

*Grand Village Natchez Indian Tribe:
400 Jefferson Davis Boulevard
Natchez, MS 39120

Teaching and learning activities about Mississippi Native Americans:

Feel free to print these out to use at school!

*Mississippi Tribes Word Search: Printable puzzle hiding the names of Mississippi's Indian tribes.
*Mississippi Language Greetings: Learn to say "hello" in several Native Mississippi languages.
*Mississippi Native Animals: Learn the Native American names of Mississippi animals.
*Mississippi Indian Facts for Kids: Answers to frequently asked questions about the tribes of Mississippi.
    We currently have pages for the Chickasaw, Choctaw, Houma, Natchez, Quapaw, and Tunica tribes.

Recommended books about Mississippi Native Americans
(Our organization earns a commission from any book bought through these links)

*Mississippi Indians: Introducing Mississippi's Native American history and culture to kids.
*Mississippi's American Indians: A more detailed book about the Indian tribes of Mississippi.
*Native Land: Mississippi 1540-1798: An absorbing history book on the American Indian tribes of Mississippi.
*History of the Choctaw, Chickasaw and Natchez Indians: Interesting 1800's attempt to tell the history of
    Mississippi's Indian tribes from their own perspective.
*Encyclopedia of Mississippi Indians: Thorough reference book about the Native American tribes of Mississippi.
*Archaeology of Mississippi: * Mississippi Archaeology Questions and Answers:
    Two good books on the ancient Indian tribes of Mississippi.
*Native American Place Names in Mississippi: The native etymology of present-day place-names in Mississippi.
*Splendid Land, Splendid People: Detailed ethnography of the Chickasaw tribe.
*Choctaw Tales: A good collection of legends from Mississippi and Alabama.

Other resources about American Indian history, culture and society in Mississippi state:

*Chickasaws: The Unconquerable People: Article on the Chickasaw tribe of Mississippi.
*Choctaw Indians in the 21st Century : Article on the Choctaw tribe of Mississippi.
*The Natchez Indians: Article on the Natchez tribe of Mississippi.

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