Choctaw Artifacts

Comparatively few articles are now made by the Choctaw, much of their ancient art having been forgotten. At the present time they purchase the necessary tools and implements at the stores, and other objects are no longer used. The list which follows is believed to include all things of native origin now made by the



Choctaw Death and Burial Practices

There appears to have been very little lamenting or mourning on the occasion of a death or a burial. The body was borne to the grave and the interment took place without a ceremony of any sort. In the event of the death of a man of great importance, however, the body was allowed to



Choctaw Tanning Method

Removing Hair

The hair having been removed, the skin is placed in a mortar, or in a hole cut a log (see image below) which serves the purpose. Eggs and cornmeal mixed with a little water are then poured over the skin, which is thoroughly beaten with a long wooden pestle. The skin is then taken from



Louisiana Choctaw Habitat

St. Tammany parish, Louisiana, borders on the northern shore of Lake Pontchartrain and is bounded on the east by the State of Mississippi, from which it is separated by Pearl River. In the southern part of the parish are many bayous that flow into Lake Pontchartrain. Extensive marshes and swamps are found between the bayous,



Choctaw Pottery

Pipes made by Ahojeobe; small silver ornament

The Choctaw have a strange superstitious belief in connection with the making of pottery. They say that no person except the one who is making the object should see it until after it has been removed from the fire. If another person chances to look on an object while it is being made or before



History of the Bayou Lacomb Choctaws

Unfortunately very little is known of the history of the people of whom this paper treats. The earliest writers, as well as the oldest maps of the region, designate the Ncolapissa as the tribe occupying the region now included within the limits of St. Tammany parish, at the time of the discovery and settlement of



Choctaw Usage of Horns

Choctaw Spoon

Spoons are made by the Choctaw from cow horns (wak lape’she sti’mpa; literally, cow horn spoon). Two good examples are represented in the following image. In describing the manners and customs of the Choctaw, Adair1 alluded to “their wooden dishes, and spoons made of wood and buffalo horn;” consequently the making of spoons is a



Louisiana Choctaw Mounds

Section of mound excavation

Several mounds are found within the Bayou Lacomb area. The largest of these is situated about 200 yards north of the right bank of Chinchuba creek, and about 1½ miles in a direct line north of Lake Pontchartrain. The mound has an elevation of between 4 and 5 feet; it is circular in form and



Choctaw Baskets

The Choctaw are excellent basket makers, although their work at the present time is greatly inferior to that of a generation ago. The best baskets are made of narrow strips of cane, Arundinaria macro­sperma (Choctaw, uske), though now, at Bayou Lacomb, they are using the stems of palmetto, Serrenoa serrulata (Choctaw, tala), as cane is



Choctaw Medicine

The Choctaw treat boils and ulcers with applications of salve made of pine pitch mixed with grease or tallow. This salve is applied also to wounds caused by splinters and thorns. Severe or deep cuts are filled with sugar and bandaged tightly. Various remedies are employed for snake bites: Smoke from strong tobacco is blown



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