Louisiana Tribe Index
Cherokee Chief
Cherokee Chief
Louisiana Tribes Index


Acolapissa tribe: Meaning "those who listen and see," indicating 
possibly "borderers" or "scouts." Also called:
Aquelou pissas, by Le Page du Pratz (1758 2: 219).
Cenepisa, by La Salle (in Margry, 1875-86564).
Colapissas, in 1699 by Penicaut (in French, 1869, p. 38).
Coulapissas, in 1700 by Sauvole (in Margry 1875-86, 4: 462).
Equinipichas, by Sauvole (in French, 1851, 3: 225).
Kinipissa, by Tonti (in Margry, 1875-86; 1: 604}.
Kolapissas, in 1700 by Gravier (in French, 1875, p. 88).

Acolapissa tribe: Connections.- The Acolapissa belonged to the Muskhogean 
linguistic family and evidently spoke a language closely related to 
Choctaw and Chickasaw. They may have been more intimately connected 
with the Napissa who united with the Chickasaw and who were perhaps 
identical with thc Napochi (q. v.) of De Luna, but their closest relatives 
were the Tangipahoa (q. v.).

Acolapissa tribe: Location.- Their earliest known location was on 
Pearl River about 11 miles above its mouth. (See also Mississippi.)

Acolapissa tribe: Villages - Iberville was told that they consisted 
of six villages and that the Tangipahos constituted a seventh, but 
we treat the latter separately, and the names of the six are not given.

Acolapissa tribe: History.- The Acolapissa are not mentioned among 
the tribes that came to Iberville in 1699 to form an alliance with 
him, but after his departure for France, Bienville visited them and 
was well received, although at first they were terrified because of 
a slave raid made upon them 2 days before by the English and Chickasaw. 
In 1702 (or 1705) they moved from Pearl River and settled on a bayou 
on the north side of Lake Pontchartrain called "Castembayouque" (now 
Castine Bayou). Six months later the Natchitoches Indians (q. v.) 
descended to the French fort on the Mississippi from their town on 
Red River to ask assistance from St. Denis, thc commandant there, 
because of the ruin of their crops. St. Denis sent them under the 
charge of Penicaut to the Acolapissa, who welcomed them and assigned 
a place for them to settle close to their own village. Late in 1713 
or early in 1714 St. Denis, who had received a commission to proceed 
to Texas to examine the Spanish settlements, sent for the Natchitoches 
intending to reestablish them in their former scats, but upon hearing, 
of this protect the Acolapissa fell upon them and killed and captured 
a considerable number. In 1718, according to Penicaut, but in any 
case before 1722, they moved over to the
Mississippi River and settled on the east side 13 leagues from New 
Orleans. In 1739 they constituted practically one settlement with 
the Bayogoula and Houma, with whom they finally merged. Their bitter 
history is one with that of the Houma (q. v.).

Acolapissa tribe: Population.- Mooney (1928) estimated that in 1650 
the population of the Acolapissa and the Tangipahoa together was 1,500. 
My own calculation as of 1698 is 1,050, based on La Harpe's (1831) 
estimate of 300 Acolapissa warriors in 1699 and Iberville's estimate 
of 250 families 3 years later. In 1722 Charlevoix states that there 
were 200 warriors and in 1739 there are said to have been of thc Acolapissa, 
Houmn, and Bayogoula together 90 to 100 warriors and 270 to 300 people 
exclusive of children.

Adai tribe: Meaning unknown.

Adai tribe: Connections - This tribe was at first thought to have 
constituted an independent linguistic stock and the name Adaizan was 
given to it, but later Dr. Gatschet determined that the Adai language 
was a somewhat aberrant Caddo dialect, and it was therefore placed 
in the Caddoan stock.

Adai tribe: Location. - Near the present Robeline in Natchitoches 

Adai tribe: History. - In 1699 Iberville mentions the Adai under 
the name Natao. In 1717 the mission of San Miguel de Linarcs was established 
among them by Spanish Franciscan missionaries. The buildings were 
destroyed in 1719 by a force of French and Indians, but they were 
rebuilt 2 years later as San Miguel de los Adaes, and the mission 
was not finally abandoned until 1773. In October 1721 a military post 
called Nuestra Senora del Pilar de los Adaes was located close to 
the mission and continued until the latter was given up. For 50 years 
this post was the capital of Texas in spite of, or because of, the 
fact that it was on its extreme eastern frontier. In 1778 De Mezieres 
states (in Bolton, 1914) that the tribe was almost extinct, but in 
1805 Sibley reported a small Adai settlement on Lake Macdon near an 
affluent of Red River. The survivors probably combined with the other 
Caddoan tribes of thc region and followed their fortunes.

Adai tribe: Population. - Bienville reported 50 warriors among them 
in 1700 but twice as many in 1718. When thc mission of San Miguel 
was rebuilt it is said to have served 400 Indians. In 1805 the Adai 
village contained only 20 men but the number of women was much greater. 
The total Adai population in 1825 was 27. My own estimate for 169 
is about 400.

Adai tribe: Connection in which they have become noted. - The Adai 
were peculiar in having spoken a dialect so diverse from the other 
Caddo forms of speech that, as already stated, Powell (1891) at first 
gave them an independent status as constituting the Adaizan linguistic 
family. Historically, the Adai Indian and White settlement was noted 
as the eastern-most outpost of the Spaniards and of the Franeiscan 
Spanish missions, and it was the capital of the Province of Texas 
for 50 years.

Alabama tribe: Some of this tribe moved to Louisiana shortly after 
the territory east of the Mississippi was abandoned by the French. 
Most of them finally passed on into Texas, but a few are still settled 
in the southwestern part of the State. (See Alabama.)

Apalachee tribe: A band of Apalachee Indians moved from the neighborhood 
of Mobile to Louisiana in 1764, remained for a short time on the Mississippi 
River and then moved up to Red River, where they obtained a grant 
of land along with the Taensa. Later they sold this land and part 
of them probably removed to Oklahoma, but others remained in Louisiana 
and amalgamated with other tribes. (See Florida.)

Atakapa tribe:  Meaning in Choctaw and Mobilian, "man eater," because 
they and some of the Indians west of them at times ate the flesh of 
their enemies. Skunnemoke The name of a chief, extended to the whole 
people. Tuk-pa'-han-ya-di, a Biloxi name. Yuk'hiti ishak, own name.

Atakapa tribe:  Connections. - The Atakapa were originally placed 
in an independent linguistic stock, including also the Bidai, Deadose, 
and probably the Opelousa, but it has now been determined that they 
belonged to one family with the Chitimacha, their eastern neighbors, 
and probably the Tunican group on the Mississippi, the whole being 
called the Tunican stock.

Atakapa tribe:  Location.- Atakapa bands extended along the coast 
of Louisiana and Texas from Vermillion Bayou to and including Trinity 
Bay. (See Akokisa under Texas.)

Atakapa tribe:  Subdivisions and Villages - The Atakapa about Trinity 
Bay and the lower course of Trinity River were called Akokisa by the 
Spaniards, but they differed in no respect from the Atnkapa of Lake 
Charles. There was, however, an eastern Atakapa dialect which was 
distinctly different from the one current in the Lake Charles and 
Trinity Bay sections and was spoken by two different bands, one about 
Vermillion Bay and one on the Mermentou River. There were a number 
of small villages but their names are unknown.

Atakapa tribe:  History. - In 1528 Cabeza de Vaca learned of the 
existence of some of these Indians, calling them Han. The portion 
of the Atakapa living in Louisiana came to the attention of the French 
after the latter had established themselves on the Mississippi River, 
but it so happened that they had more dealings with the people of 
Trinity Bay, the Akokisa. This was owing in the first place to the 
romantic adventures of a French officer, Simars de Belle-Isle, left 
upon this coast in 1719. In 1721 Bernard de la Harpe and Captain Beranger 
accompanied by Belle- Isle visited the bay and carried some Indians 
off with them to New Orleans. Fortunately for us, Beranger recorded 
a number of words in their language which prove it to have been almost 
identical with the Atakapa of Lake Charles. The Indians subsequently 
escaped and are reported to have reached their own country. In 1779 
the band of Atakapa on Vermillion Bayou furnished 60 men and the Mermentou 
band 120 men to Galvez for his expedition against the British forts 
on the Mississippi. In the latter part of the eighteenth century numerous 
plots of land were sold to French Creoles by the Atakapa Indians, 
but the last village of the easternmost band was not abandoned until 
early in the nineteenth century. The last village of the Atakapa who 
spoke the eastern dialect was on the Mermentou and Indians are said 
to have lived there down to 1836. The Calcasieu band held together 
for a longer period, so that in 1908 a few persons were living who 
once made their homes in the last native village on Indian Lake or 
Lake Prien. It was from two of these that Dr. Gatchet, in January 
1885, obtained his Atakapa linguistic material. (See Gatschet and 
Swanton, 1932.) Although in 1907 and 1908 I found a few Indians who 
knew something of the old tongue, it is today practically extinct. 
(See also J. O. Dyer, 1917.) As early as 1747 a Spanish mission was 
proposed for the Akokisa Indians, and in 1766, or about that time, 
it was established on the left bank of Trinity River, a short distance 
below the present Liberty. It was named Nuestra Senora de la Luz, 
and near it was the presidio of San Agustin de Ahumada erected the 
same year. Before 1772 both of these had been abandoned. In 1805 the 
principal Akokisa village was on the west side of  Colorado River 
about 200 miles southwest of Nacogdoches, but there was another between 
the Neches and the Sabine. The ultimate fate of the tribe is unknown.

Atakapa tribe:  Population. - Exclusive of the Akokisa, Mooney (1928) 
estimates a population of 1,500 Atakapa in 1660, which the Akokisa 
would perhaps swell to 2,000. In 1747 a Spanish report gives 300 Akokisa 
families, a figure which is probably too high. In 1779 the Bayou Vermillion 
and Mermentou bands had 180 warriors. Sibley (1832) states that in 
1805 there were 80 warriors in the only Atakapa town remaining but 
that 30 of these were Houma and Tunica. The same writer adds that 
in 1760-70 the Akokisa numbered 80 men.

Atakapa tribe:  Connection, in which they have become noted.- The 
traditional fame of the Atakapa rests upon the sinister reputation 
it had acquired as a body of cannibals. After the French began to 
settle southwestern Louisiana, they distinguished as the Atakapas 
district a section of southern Louisiana including the parishes of 
St. Mary, Iberia, Vermillion, St. Martin, and Lafayette, a usage which 
continues in commercial reports to the present day. The capital of 
this district, the modern St. Martinville, was known as the Atakapas 
Post. In Spartanburg County, S. C., is a place called Tucapau, the 
name of which may have been taken from this tribe.

Avoyel tribe: The name signifies probably "people of the rocks," 
referring to flint and very likely applied because they were middlemen 
in supplying the Gulf coast tribes with flint. Also called:
Little Taensa, so-called from their relationship to the Taensa (q.v.).
Tassenocogoula, name in the Mobilian trade language, meaning "flint 

Avoyel tribe: Connections. - The testimony of early writers and 
circumstantial evidence render it almost certain that the Avoyel spoke 
a dialect of the Natchez group of the Muskhogean linguistic family.

Avoyel tribe: Location. - In the neighborhood of the present Marksville, 

Avoyel tribe: History. - The Avoyel are mentioned first by Iberville 
in the account of his first expedition to Louisiana in 1699, where 
they appear under the Mobilian form of their name, Tassenocogoula. 
He did not meet any of the people, however, until the year following 
when he calls them "Little Taensas." They were encountered by La Harpe 
in 1714, and Le Page du Pratz (1758) gives a short notice of them 
from which it appears that they acted as middlemen in disposing to 
the French of horses and cattle plundered from Spanish settlements. 
In 1764 they took part in an attack upon a British regiment ascending 
the Mississippi (see Ofo), and they are mentioned by some later writers, 
but Sibley (1832) says they were extinct in 1805 except for two or 
three women "who did live among the French inhabitants of Washita." 
In 1930 one of thc Tunica Indians still claimed descent from this 

Avoyel tribe: Population. - I have estimated an Avoyel population 
of about 280 in 1698. Iberville and Bienville state that they had 
about 40 warriors shortly after this period. (See Taensa.)

Avoyel tribe: Connection in which they have become noted. - The 
name of the Avoyel is perpetuated in that of Avoyelles Parish, La.

Bayogoula tribe: Meaning "bayou people," either from their location 
or from the fact that their tribal emblem was the alligator.

Bayogoula tribe: Connections. - Their language was of the southern 
Mushkogean division, not far removed from Houma and Choctaw.

Bayogoula tribe: Location. - Near the present Bayou Goula, in Iberville 

Bayogoula tribe: History. - Unless this tribe was the Pishenoa encountered 
by Tonti in 1686 and not mentioned subsequently, it was first visited 
by Iberville in 1699. It then occupied one town with the Mugulasha 
(q. v.). In the winter of 1699-1700 thc Bayogoula suffered severely 
from a surprise attack of the Houma. In the spring of 1700, for what 
cause we know not, the Bayogoula attacked their fellow townsmen, the 
Mugulasha, and destroyed them, but in 1706 they suffered a similar 
fate at thc hands of the Taensa who had sought refuge with them. The 
remnant of the Bayogoula was given a place near New Orleans, but some 
time later they moved up the river to the present Ascension Parish, 
where they were found in 1739 between the Houma and Acolapissa. Yet 
our informant states that the three tribes were virtually one and 
thc same, the distinction being kept up merely because the chief of 
each band was descended from the tribe mentioned. Thc subsequent history 
of the Bayogoula is identical with that of the Houma. (See Houma under 

Bayogoula tribe: Population. - Mooney (1928) estimates that in 1650 
there were 1,500 of the Bayogoula, Quinipissa, and Mugulasha together. 
My own estimate for the same tribes, as of 1698, is 875. In 1699 Iberville 
gave about 100 cabins and 200-250 warriors, and the Journal of his 
companion ship, Le Marin, has 400-500 people. In 1700, after the destruction 
of the Mugulasha, Gravier gives a population of 200, and about 1715 
they are said to have had 40 warriors. For their numbers in 1739, 
see Houma under Mississippi.

Bayogoula tribe: Connection in which they have become noted.- This 
tribe shared with the Washa the distinction of having been the first 
Indians within the limits of the present State of Louisiana to meet 
Iberville in the year in which the French colony of Louisiana was 
founded. The name is preserved in the post village of Bayou Goula, 
Iberville Parish, La., which seems to be close to the location of 
the original Indian town.

Biloxi tribe: The Biloxi settled in Louisiana about 1764, and a 
very few are still living there. (See Mississippi.)

Caddo tribe: The Caddo Indians are given under five different heads: 
the Adai and the Natchitoches Confederacy in Louisiana; the Eyeish, 
the Hasinai Confederacy, and the Kadohadacho Confederacy in Texas. 
(See Arkansas)

Chatot tribe: The Chatot entered Louisiana about 1764, lived for 
a while on Bayou Bocuf, and later moved to Sabine River, after which 
nothing more is heard of them. (See Florida.)

Chawasha tribe: Meaning unknown, though possibly "raccoon place

Chawasha tribe: Connections.- A reference to this tribe and thc 
Washa by Bienville places them in the Chitimacha division of the Tunican 
linguistic stock. I had erroneously concluded at an earlier period, 
on slender circumstantial evidence, that they were Muskhogeans.

Chawasha tribe: Location - On Bayou La Fourche and eastward to thc 
Gulf of Mexico and across the Mississippi.

Chawasha tribe: History.- After the relics of De Soto's army had 
escaped to the mouth of the Mississippi River and while their brigantines 
were riding at anchor there, they were attacked by Indians, some of 
whom had "staves, having very sharp heads of fish-bone." (See Bourne 
1904, vol. 2, p. 202.) These may have belonged to the Chawasha and 
Washa tribes. The same two tribes are said, on doubtful authority, 
to have attempted to attack an English sea captain who ascended the 
Mississippi in 1699, but they were usually friendly to the French. 
In 1712 they were moved to the Mississippi by Bienville and established 
themselves on the west side, just below the English Turn. In 1713 
(or more probably 1715) they were attacked by a party of Chickasaw, 
Yazoo, and Natchez, who killed the head chief and many of his family, 
and carried off 11 persons as prisoners. Before 1722 they had crossed 
to the east side of the river, half a league lower down. In 1730, 
in order to allay the panic in New Orleans following on the Natchez 
uprising of 1729 which resulted in the massacre of the Whites at Natchez, 
Governor Perrier allowed a band of Negro slaves to attack the Chawasha, 
and it is commonly reported that they were then destroyed. The French 
writer Dumont (1753) is probably right, however, when he states that 
only seven or eight adult males were killed. At any rate they are 
mentioned as living with the Washa at Les Allemands on the west side 
of the Mississippi above New Orleans in 1739, and in 1758 they appear 
as constituting one village with the Washa. Except for one uncertain 
reference, this is the last we hear of them, but they may have continued 
for a considerable period longer before disappearing as a distinct 

Chawasha tribe: Population - Mooney (1928) gives an estimate of 
1,400 for the Washa, Chawasha, and Opelousa together in the year 1650. 
My own estimate for the first two and the Okelousa, as of 1698, is 
700. This is based on Beaurain's (La Harpe's) estimate (1831) of 200 
warriors for the 3 tribes. About 1715 there are said to have been 
40 Chawasha warriors; in 1739, 30 warriors of the Washa and Chawasha 
together; and in 1758, 10 to 12.

Chawasha tribe: Connection in which they have become noted. - The 
Chawasha attained temporary notoriety on account of the massacre perpetrated 
upon them in the manner above mentioned.

Chitimacha tribe: Perhaps derived from the name of Grand River in 
the native tongue, which was Sheti, though Gatschet (1883) interprets 
it through the Choctaw maguage as meaning "those who have pots."

Chitimacha tribe: Connections. - The Chitimacha have given their 
name to a group of languages under the Tunican linguistic stock, including 
also the Chawasha and Washa.

Chitimacha tribe: Location.- On Grand River, Grand Lake, and the 
lower course of Bayou La Teche.

Chitimacha tribe: Subdivisions and Villages. - The earliest French 
writers couple with this tribe the namee of a tribe or supposed tribe 
called Yakna-Chitto, "Big Earth," but it is not known whether they 
were a part of the Chitimacha or an entirely independent people. In 
later times the Chitimaeha were drawn into two unnamed subdivisions, 
one near the upper end of Bayou La Fourche and the other on Grand 
Lake. Following are the known villages:
Ama'tpan na'mu, two villages: 
     (1) 3 miles east of Charenton on Bayou Teche 
     (2) on the east side of Grand Lake opposite Charenton.
Grosse Tete na'mu, 2 miles from the village at Plaquemine.
Hi'pinimsh na'mu, at the Fausse Pointe in the western part of Crand 
Lake, near Bayou Gosselin.
Ka'me naksh teat na'mu, at Bayou du Plomb, near Bayou Chene, 18
miles north of Charenton.
Ku'shuh na'mu, on Lake Mingaluak, near Bayou Chene.
Na'mu ka'tsi, the Bayou Chene village, St. Martin's Parish.
Ne'kun tsi'snis, opposite Ile aux Oiscaux, in the Lac de la Fausse Pointe.
Ne Pinu'nsh, on Bayou Teche, 2 miles west of Charenton.
Oku'nkiskin, probably at some sharp bend on Bayou La Teche judging 
from their name.
Shatshnish, at Jeanerette.
She'ti na'mu, on Grand River west of Plaquemine.
Sho'ktangi ha'ne hetci'nsh, on the south side of Graine a Voice 
Inlet, Grand Lake.
Tca'ti kuti'ngi na'mu, at the junction of Bayou Teche with the Atchafalaya 
Tcat kasi'tunshki, on the site of Charenton.
Tsa'htsinshup na'mu, the Plaquemine village, on Bayou des Plaquemines 
near Grand River.
Waitinimsh, at Irish Bend near Franklin.

There are said to have been others at the shell bank on the shore 
of Grand Lake, close to Charenton, and at a place called "Bitlarouges."

Chitimacha tribe: History. - Iberville made an alliance with the 
Chitimacha in 1699, shortly after his arrival in the present Louisiana. 
In August 1706, the Taensa captured some Chitimacha by treachery and 
enslaved them, and later the same year a Chitimacha war partly killed 
St. Cosme, missionary to the Natchez, and three other Frenchmen encamped 
with him. War followed between the Chitimacha on one hand and the 
French and their Indian allies on the other, which dragged along until 
1718. The Chitimacha suffered severely during these 12 years and this 
war was responsible for the fact that in the early days of the Louisiana 
colony the greater part of the Indian slaves were Chitimacha. By the 
terms of the peace concluded in 1718, the Chitimacha agreed to settle 
at a designated spot upon the Mississippi, not far from the present 
Plaquemine. This, they or rather the eastern portion of them, did 
in 1719. In 1739 they seem to have been farther down, near the head 
of Bayou La Fourche. In 1784 one village is reported on Bayou La Fourche 
and two on the Teche. By 1881 the only survivors were near Charenton, 
where they occupied a small part of what had once been a considerable 
reservation. In that year and the year following Dr. A. S. Gatschct 
of the Bureau of American Ethnology collected from them a considerable 
body of linguistic material and some ethnological information. (See 
Gatschet, 1883.)  Descendants of the tribe, mostly mixed-bloods, occupy 
the same section at the present time, but the Plaquemine band has 

Chitimacha tribe: Population. - Mooney (1928) estimated that in 
1650 the Chitimacha numbered 3,000 souls. The present writer allowed 
750 warriors to the tribe in 1698, based on Beaurain's estimate of 
700-800 in 1699, which would mean about 2,625 souls. In 1758 the Mississippi 
band counted only about 80 warriors and in 1784 Hutchins gives 27. 
The size of the western band is nowhere indicated separately but the 
census of 1910 gives 69 for the entire tribe, 19 of whom were then 
at school in Pennsylvania. In 1930, 51 were returned.

Chitimacha tribe: Connection in which they have become noted.- The 
Chitimacha were the most powerful tribe of the northern Gulf coast 
west of Florida in United States territory. They also attained prominence 
in early Louisiana history on account of their long war with the French 
and the number of Chitimacha slaves in colonial families arising from 
that fact. Tho survivors are noteworthy as the best basket makers 
in the whole Gulf region.

Choctaw tribe. - Choctaw began moving into Louisiana not long after 
the settlement of New Orleans, at first temporarily, but later for 
permanent occupancy, especially after the territory east of the Mississippi 
had been ceded to Great Britain. Some settled on the northern shores 
of Lake Pontchartrain, where a few still remain, while other bands 
established themselves on the Nezpigue, Red River, Bayou Boeuf, and 
elsewhere. Most of these drifted in time to the Choctaw Nation of 
Oklahoma, but a few families are still scattered about the State 
of Louisiana. (See Mississippi; )

Doustioni tribe: A small tribe of the Natchitoches Confederacy (q.v.).

Houma tribe: When first encountered by Europeans, the Houma lived 
near the present boundary line between Mississippi and Louisiana, 
if not actually on the Louisiana side. In 1706 or shortly afterward 
they moved altogether within the limits of Louisiana, where their 
descendants have remained to the present day. (See Mississippi.)

Koasati tribe: Part of this tribe entered Louisiana near thc end 
of the eighteenth century and lived on Red River and in the western 
part of the State. At the present day, the largest single band of 
Koasati in existence is northeast of Kinder, La. (See Alabama.)

Koroa tribe: The Koroa camped, hunted, andd had at times more permanent 
settlements in northeastern Louisiana. (See Mississippi.)

Mugulasha tribe: This was a tribe which formerly lived in the same 
town as the Bayogoula on the lower course of the Mississippi. Some 
early writers state that they were identical with thc Quinipissa and 
they will be treated in connection with that tribe.

Muskogee tribe: The true Muskogee were represented by one band, 
a part of the Pakana tribe, which moved into the colony about 1764. 
They were settled upon Calcasieu River in 1805. Later they seem to 
have united with the Alabama now living in Polk County, Tex., but 
there are no known survivors as this present day (1993). (See Alabama.)

Natchez tribe: When this tribe was attacked by the French after 
they had destroyed the Natchez post, they escaped into Louisiana and 
fortified themselves at Sicily Island, from which most of them again 
escaped. A part under the chief of the Flour Village attacked the 
French post at Natchitoches in the fall of 1731, drove the Natchitoches 
from their town, and entrenched themselves in it. St. Denis, commander 
of that post, attacked them, however, having been previously reinforced 
by some Caddo and Atakapa, and inflicted upon them a severe defeat. 
After this no considerable number of Natchez seem to have remained 
in Louisiana. (See Mississippi.)

Natchitoches Confederacy tribe: The word "Natchitoches" is generally 
supposed to be derived from "nashitosh", the native word for pawpaw 
but an early Spanish writer, Jose Antonio Pichardo, was told that 
it was from a native word "nacicit" signifying "a place where the 
soil is the color of red ochre," and that it was applied originally 
to a small creek in their neighborhood running through red soil. The 
following are synonyms:
Nachittoos, Yoakum, 1855-56, vol. 1 p. 392.
Nachtichoukas, Jefferys, 1761, pt. 1, p. 164.
Nacitos, Binares (1700) in Margry, 1875-86, vol. 6, p. 217.
Nactythos, Iberville (1699) in Margry, 1850, 1875-86, vol. 4, p.178.
Nadchito, Bienville (1700), in Margry, 1875-86, vol. 4, p. 434.
Naketosh, Gatschet, Caddo and Yatassi MS., p. 77, B. A. E.
Napgitache, McKenney and Hall, 1854, vol. 3, p. 82.
Naquitoches, Belle-Isle (1721), in Margry, 1875-86, vol. 6, p.341.
Nashi'tosh, Mooney, 1896, p. 1092.
Nasitti, Joutel (1687) in Margry, 1875-89-6, vol. 3, p. 409.
Natsytos, Iberville (1699) in Margry, 1875-86, vol 4, p. 178.
Notchitoches, Carver, 1778, map.
Yatchitcohes, Lewis and Clark, 1840, p. 142.

Natchitoches Confederacy tribe: As part of the Caddo, the same terms 
were applied to them as appear under Kadohadacho (q. v.).

Natchitoches Confederacy tribe: Connections. - They belonged to 
the Caddo division of the Caddoan linguistic stock, their nearest 
relatives being the Indians of the Kadohadacho and Hasinai Confederacies.

Natchitoches Confederacy tribe: Location. - In northwestern Louisiana.

Natchitoches Confederacy tribe: Subdivisions - 
Doustioni, appearing sometimes as Souchitioni, a small tribe near the 
present Natchitoches. 
Natchitoches, close to the present site of Natchitoches. 
Ouachita, on Ouachita River not far from the present Columbia.

Yatasi tribe: Lived on Red River near Shreveport. A tribe called 
Capiche is mentioned by Tonti, but it is otherwise never referred 
to. Another called Nakasa, Nakase, Natches or Natache was probably 
a part of the Yatasi tribe, and Tonti mentions a tribe called Choye, 
probably the Chaye of Joutel (1713), as a people associated with the 
Yatasi. At a relatively late date part of the Yatasi went to live 
with the Indians of the Kadohadacho Confederation while the rest settled 
close to the Natchitoches.

Yatasi tribe: History.- Moscoso, De Soto's successor, perhaps encountered 
some of the tribes of this group though his route lay farther north 
and west. On February 17, 1690, Tonti reached the villages of these 
Indians coming from the Taensa on Lake St. Joseph, nnd went on up 
the river to the Kadohadacho, visiting the Yatasi on the way. In March 
1700 Bienville followed the same route from the Taensa and reached 
the Natchitoches Indians in April, stopping at the Ouachita town en 
route. He went up Red River as far as the Yatasi and then returned 
to Biloxi. In 1702 the Natchitoches tribe, having lost their crops, 
descended the Red River and the Mississippi to the French fort near 
the mouth of the latter, then commanded by Louis Juchereau de St. 
Denis, who received them kindly and sent them to live with the Acolapissa 
Indians on Lake Pontchartrain. A few years later St. Denis visited 
the Natchitoches country himself. In 1707 four Indians of this tribe 
took part in an expedition against the Chitimacha to avenge the death 
of the missionary St. Cosme. In 1713-14 St. Denis sent for the Natchitoches 
Indians in order to take them back to their old country, where he 
had planned to establish a post. On learning of the intentions of 
their neighbors, the Acolapissa Indians fell upon them, killed 17 
and captured 50 women and girls, but the latter were apparently recovered 
soon afterward and all were returned to their old town, where the 
post was established according to plan in 1714. From this time until 
his death St. Denis' career was intimately bound up with this post 
and the Indians about it, though he was frequently engaged in expeditions 
into and across Texas. He was formally appointed commandant of the 
post July 1, 1720, and retained it until his death in June 1744. In 
1731, with the assistance of his Indians and a detachment of soldiers 
from the Spanish post of Adai, he won a signal victory over a large 
body of Natchez Indians, the only clear-cut advantage which the French 
gained in the Natchcz War.  

In the meantime Natchitoches had become the center of a flourishing 
trade with the Indians extending far to the north and west, and when 
St. Denis died his son, Louis de St. Denis continued to enjoy the 
advantages of it and to share the prestige of his father. During all 
of this time, however, the Natchitoches Indians seem to have been 
decreasing, and toward the end of the eighteenth century they parted 
with most of their lands to French Creoles, though their relations 
with the latter seem to have been uniformly cordial. Part of them 
remained in their old country permanently and either died out or mixed 
with the newcomers, while the rest joined their relatives of the Kadohadacho 
and Hasinai Confederations and followed their fortunes. 

Natchitoches Confederacy tribe: Population. - In 1700 Bienville 
estimated that there were 400-450 warriors in the Natchitoches Confederacy, 
but in 1718 he reported that the number had fallen to 80, while La 
Harpe {1831} reported a total population of 150- 200. In 1805 Sibley 
(1832) reported 52 warriors and for the Natchitoches tribe by itself, 
32, and 20 years later a total population of 61 was returned. An estimate 
of 1,000 for all of these tribes before White contact would probably 
be ample.

Natchitoches Confederacy tribe: Connection in which they have become 
noted. - The city of Natchitoches, La., is named after this group 
of tribes and is noteworthy as the oldest permanent settlement in 
the State. The victory which they enabled St. Denis to win over the 
Natchez Indians occupies a noteworthy place in the history of the 

Ofo or Ofogoula tribe: This tribe entered Louisiana some time in 
the latter half of the eighteenth century and finally united with 
the Tunica, settling with them at Marksville. (See the article Mosopelea 
under Ohio and Tunica under Mississippi.)

Okelousa tribe: Meaning "black water."

Okelousa tribe: Connections. - The associations of this tribe were 
mainly with Muskhogean peoples and this fact, coupled with the Muskhogean 
name, indicates their linguistic affiliations with a fair degree of 

Okelousa tribe: Location. - The Okelousa moved about considerably. 
The best-determined location is the one mentioned by Le Page du Pratz 
(1758), on the west side of the Mississippi back of and above Pointe 
Coupee. (See History below.) (See also .Mississippi.)

Okelousa tribe: History. - After De Soto reached the principal Chickasaw 
town, the head chief came to him, January 3, 1541, "and promptly gave 
the Christians guides and interpreters to go to Caluca, a place of 
much repute among the Indians. Caluca is a province of more than 90 
villages not subject to anyone, with a savage population, very warlike 
and much dreaded, and the soil is fertile in that section. (See Bourne, 
1904, 1922, vol. 2, p. 132.) There is every reason to think that Caluca 
is a shortened form of Okalousa and it is rather likely that the later 
Okelousa were descended from these people, but if so either De Soto's 
informants had very much exaggerated their numbers or they suffered 
immense losses before we hear of them again. The name in De Soto's 
time may, however, have been applied to a geographical region. Nicolas 
de la Salle, writing in 1682, quotes native informants to the effect 
that this tribe, in alliance with the Houma, had destroyed a third. 
La Harpe (1831) mentions them as allied with the Washa and Chawasha 
and wandering near the seacoast, a statement which led me to the erroneous 
conclusion that the three tribes thus associated were related. The 
notice of them by Le Page du Pratz has been mentioned above. They 
finally united with the Houma, the Acolapissa, or some other Muskhogean 
band on the lower Mississippi.

Okelousa tribe: Population. - Unknown, but for an estimate, see 

Opelousa tribe: Probably from Mobilian and Choctaw "Aba lusa", "black 
above," and meaning "black headed" or "black haired."

Opelousa tribe: Connections. - No words of the Opelousa language 
have survived, but the greater number of the earlier references to 
them speak as if they were allied with the Atakapa, and it is probable 
that they belonged to the Atakapan group of tribes.

Opelousa tribe: Location. - In the neighborhood of the present Opelousas.

Opelousa tribe: History. - The Opelousa seem to have been mentioned 
first by Bienville in an unpublished report on the Indians of the 
Mississippi and Gulf regions. They were few in numbers and led a wandering 
life. They maintained some sort of distinct tribal existence into 
the nineteenth century but disappeared by the end of the first quarter 
of it.

Opelousa tribe: Population. - About 1715 this tribe was estimated 
to have 130 warriors; in 1805 they are said to have had 40, and in 
1814 the total population of the tribe is placed at 20.

Opelousa tribe: Connection in which they have become noted. - The 
Opelousa gave their name to an important post and the district depending 
upon it.

Ouachita tribe: A tribe of the Natchitoches Confederacy (q. v.).

Pascagoula tribe: This tribe entered Louisiana about 1764 and lived 
on Red River and Bayou Boeuf. Their subsequent history is wrapped 
in uncertainty. (See Mississippi.)

Quapaw tribe: From 1823 to 1833 the Quapaw lived with the Kadohadacho 
on a southern affluent of Red River. (See Arkansas.)

Quinipissa tribe: Signifying "those who see," perhaps meaning "scouts," 
or "outpost."

Quinipissa tribe: Connections.- The Quinipissa belonged to the southern 
division of the Muskhogean stock, and probably were very closely related 
to the Choctaw.

Quinipissa tribe: Location. - On the west bank of the Mississippi 
River and some distance above New Orleans.

Quinipissa tribe: History. - There may have been a connection between 
this tribe, the Acolapissa (q. v.) and the Napissa or Napochi. (See 
Mississippi.) They were met first by La Salle and his companions when 
the latter were on their way to the Gulf of Mexico in 1682. They treated 
the explorers in a hostile manner but made peace with Tonti in 1686. 
When Iberville ascended the river in 1699, no tribe of the name was 
to be found, but later it was learned that the chief of the Mugulasha 
tribe, then forming one village with the Bayogoula, was the same Quinipissa 
chief who had had dealings with La Salle and Tonti. According to some 
writers, the Mugulasha were identical with the Quinipissa; according 
to others, the Mugulasha had absorbed the remains of the Quinipissa. 
In May 1700, the Bayogoula rose against the Mugulasha and destroyed 
them as a tribe, though they probably adopted many of them as individuals. 
We hear nothing further regarding them. 

Quinipissa tribe: Population. - There is no separate estimate of 
the number of the Quinipissa. (See Bayogoula.)

Quinipissa tribe: Connection in which they have become noted. - 
The Quinipissa are noted only for thc encounter, ultimately hostile, 
which La Salle had with them in 1682 when he descended to the mouth 
of the Mississippi.

Souchitioni tribe: See Natchitoches Confederacy.

Taensa tribe: Meaning unknown, but the name is evidently derived 
from that of one of the tribes constituent towns.

Taensa tribe: Connections. - They were one of the three known tribes 
of the Natchez division of the Muskhogean stock.

Taensa tribe: Location. - At the western end of Lake St. Joseph, 
in Tensas Parish. (See also Alabama.)

Taensa tribe: Villages. - The only list of Taensa villages preserved 
was obtained by Iberville through the medium of the Mobilian trade 
language and it is uncertain how much of each name is a Mobilian translation. 
In four of them we recognize the Mobilian word for people, Okla. These 
villages are: Taensas, Ohytoucoulas, Nyhougoulas, Couthaougoula, Conchayon, 
Talaspa, and Chaoucoula. Gatschet has endeavored to interpret all 
but one of them; Taensas by reference to tan'tci, "corn"; Ohytoucoulas 
from u'ti, "chestnut"; Couthaougoula from uk'ha'tax, "lake"; Conchayon 
from ko'nshak, "reed"; Talaspa from ta'`lapi, "five" or ta'`lepa, 
"hundred"; Chaoucoula from issi, "deer" or ha'tche, "river." most 
of these seem in the highest degree doubtful. All of the towns were 
situated close together in the place above indicated.

Taensa tribe: History.- It is altogether probable that thc Spaniards 
under De Soto encountered the Taensa or bands afterward affiliated 
with them, and the probability is strengthened by the fact that La 
Salle in 1682 was shown some objects of Spanish origin by the chief 
of the Tacnsa. However, La Salle and his companions are the first 
Europeans known to have met them. The French were treated with great 
kindness and no war ever took place between the two peoples. The Taensa 
were subsequently visited by Tonti and by Iberville. When the latter 
was in their town in 1700 the temple was destroyed by fire, whereupon 
five infants were thrown into the flames to appease the supposedly 
offended deity. De Montigny undertook missionary work among them for 
a brief period but soon went to the Natchez as presenting a larger 
field and his place was never filled. In 1706 the Taensa abandoned 
their villages on account of the threatening attitude of the Yazoo 
and Chickasaw and settled in the town of the Bayogoula whom they afterward 
destroyed or drove away in the tragic manner above described.  (See 
Bayogoula.) The Taensa appear to have moved shortly to a spot in 
the vicinity of Edgard, St. John Baptist Parish, and later to the 
Manchac. In 1715 they left this latter place and moved to Mobile, 
where they were assigned a townsite 2 leagues from the French post, 
at a place formerly occupied by the Tawasa. Before 1744 they had crossed 
the Tensaw River, to which they gave their name, and made a near settlement 
which they retained until Mobile was surrendered to the British in 
1763. Soon after that event, they moved to Red River. In April 1764, 
they asked permission to establish themselves on the Mississippi River 
at the upper end of Bayou La Fourcho, but they seem never to have 
gone there. For more than 40 years they occupied a tract of land on 
Red River adjoining that of the Apalachee. Early in the nineteenth 
century both tribes sold their lands and moved to Bayou Boeuf. Still 
later the Taensa seem to have moved farther south to a small bayou 
at the head of Grand Lake which still bears their name, where they 
intermarried with the Chitimacha, Alabama, and Atakapa. Some taensa 
blood is known to run in the veins of certain Chitimacha, but as a 
tribe they are entirely extinct.

Taensa tribe: Population. - Mooney's estimate (1928) for the Taensa 
and Avoyel in 1650 is 800, and my own for 1698 slightly greater or 
nearly the same, although De Montigny (in Shea, 1861), writing in 
1699, gives only 700. In 1700 Iberville estimated 120 cabins and 300 
warriors, but in 1702 allows them 150 families. Somewhat later Le 
Page du Pratz (1758) says they had about 100 cabins. In 1764 this 
tribe, with the Apalachee and Pakana Creeks, counted about 200 all 
told. Sibley (1832) places the number of Taensa warriors in 1805 at 

Taensa tribe: Connection in which they become noted. - The Taensa 
were noted for (1) the peculiarity of their customs, which were like 
those of the Natchez, (2) the tragic destruction of their temple in 
1700 and the human sacrifices which followed, (3) the perpetuation 
of their name in Tensas Parish, Tensas River, and Tensas Bayou, La., 
and the Tensaw River and Tensaw Village in Baldwin County, Ala. 

Tangipahoa tribe: Meaning probably "corncob gatherers," or  "corncob 

Tangipahoa tribe: Connections. - The name of this tribe and its 
affiliations with the Acolapissa indicate that it belonged to the 
southern division of the Muskhogean stock.

Tangipahoa tribe: Location.- Probably on the present Tangipahoa 
River, Tangipahoa Parish.

Tangipahoa tribe: History. - The original home of the Tangipahoa 
seems to have been as given above, and their relations with the Acolapissa 
must have been very close, for Iberville was informed by some Indians 
that they constituted a seventh Acolapissa town. In 1682 La Salle's 
party discovered a town on the eastern side of the Mississippi, 2 
leagues below the settlement of the Quinipissa, which had recently 
been destroyed, and one of his companions calls this "Tangibao," while 
others speak of it as hlaheouala or Mahehoualaima. The last two terms 
may refer to the name of the town and the first to that of the tribe 
which occupied it. Probably a part of the Tangipahoa only settled 
here, but, as we hear little of them after this period, we must assume 
that they had been absorbed by some other people, most likely the

Tangipahoa tribe: Population. - (See Acolapissa.)

Tangipahoa tribe: Connection in which they have become noted. - 
Tangipalloa Parish, Tangipahoa River, in Amite and Pike Counties, 
Miss., and Tangipahoa Parish, La., and the post town of Tangipahoa 
preserve the name of the Tangipahoa.

Tawasa tribe: Some Tawasa accompanied the Alabama to Louisiana but 
not until after the separate existence of the tribe had been ended. 
(See Alabama.)

Washa tribe: Appearing often in literature in the French form Ouacha, 
meaning unknown.

Washa tribe: Connection.- The nearest relations of the Washa were 
the Chawasha (q.v.) and both belonged to the Chitimachan branch of 
the Tunican linguistic family.

Washa tribe: Location.- Their earliest known location was on Bayou 
La Fourche, perhaps in the neighborhood of the present Labadieville, 
Assumption Parish.

Washa tribe:  Villages. - None are known under any but the tribal 

Washa tribe: History. - As stated in treating the Chawasha, this 
tribe and the one just mentioned may have been those which attacked 
Moscoso's flotilla at the mouth of the Mississippi. Shortly after 
Iberville reached America in 1699, the Washa and three other tribes 
west of the Mississippi came to make an alliance with him and a little 
later, on his way up the great river, he fell in with some of them. 
He calls Bayou La Fourche "the River of the Washas." In July 1699, 
Bienville made a vain attempt to establish friendly relations with 
them, but we hear little more of them until 1715 {1} when Bienville 
moved them to the Mississippi and settled them 2 leagues above New 
Orleans on the south side of the Mississippi. In 1739 the Washa and 
Chawasha were found living together at Les Allemands, and they probably 
continued in the same neighborhood until a considerably later period. 
Sibley (1832) says the tribe in 1805 was reduced to 5 persons (2 men 
and 3 women) scattered in French families.

Washa tribe: Population.- A memoir attributed to Bienville states 
that in 1715 the Washa numbered 50 warriors, having been reduced from 
200. This is the only separate estimate of them. (See Chawasha for 
the combined population of the two tribes for other periods.) 

Washa tribe: Connection in which they have become noted. - The name 
Washa is preserved in Washa Lake, near the seacoast of Terrebonne 
Parish, La., and it was formerly given to Lake Salvador, southeast 
of New Orleans.

Yatasi tribe: A tribe of the Natchitoches Confederacy (q.v.).

End of Louisiana Indian tribes.

Source & Reference Notes!

   "The Indian Tribes of North America"
    By John R. Swanton; 1944
    [Retired from active membership on the staff of the 
    Bureau of American Ethnology in 1944]

   File: LA_PG1.TXT
   Refised: July 05, 1996
   By: Paul R. Sarrett, Jr., [email protected]

SE. Index
N.A. Index
SFA - Index

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Text - Copyright © 1996-2002 Paul R. Sarrett, Jr.
Created: Dec. 01, 1996; Mar. 25, 2002