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From Chief's Front Porch - 1

As reprinted from the Overhill Cherokee Facebook page

By Ocie Woolsey on Saturday, November 30, 2013 at 12:46am

"Si Ya"

Sometime in my life's path I have been asked: "Are you Indian, or are you part Indian?". They might have seen my Medicine Bag or noticed I had on moccasins that my Uncle had made me, or because I had black hair, dark skin, and dark brown eyes. All throughout my life, I have been asked: "What kind of Indian are you?".

This is what kind of Indian I am;

Well, I'm the son of a man who was part Indian and part white. I'm the son of a woman who was part Indian and part white. I'm the kind of Indian whose ancestors were known as "Half Breeds". When my Mother and Father were growing up, it was a shame to be considered "Half Breeds"

As I grew up, I was treated by people, in general, who considered me inferior to their children. I could go play or hang out at their houses, but they weren't allowed to come to my house to visit or spend the night. My blood line is so mixed up between Cherokee Blood lines, French Blood lines, and Black-dutch Blood lines.

My Grandmother, my Mother, my great Aunts, my Uncle and old people all lived their lives unable to speak of the blood lines. These people chose me to share the history of our people.

I remember from around 5 or 6 hears old, I had Indian blood. No, I don't have a BIA Indian card, I am not a Government Issued Indian. When I was a child, I could hear the beat of my ancestor's drum in my heart, before I heard the drum beat with my ears.

I'm the kind of "Half Breed" Indian who will never forget the hardships that my people have suffered at the hands of the white government. I'm honored to share knowledge with those who want to know the ways of our ancestors.

Sometimes, the people have befriended me and I have shared my knowledge with them. They have twisted and written what I shared with them, and tried to take credit for my words. However, I feel that I must share the knowledge of my Over-Hill Ancestors so that they will not have lived and died in vain. I'm honored to be able to do this.

"By the way, I am an Over-Hill Cherokee Indian"!

Until Next Week,


Wa Dan,

Man Many Trees