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Congaree Indians

Congaree Tribe: Meaning unknown. Congaree Connection. No words of this language have been preserved but the form of the name and general associations of the tribe leave little doubt that it was a Siouan dialect, related most closely to Catawba. Congaree Location. On Congaree River, centering in the neighborhood of the present State Capital, Columbia. Congaree Villages. The only village mentioned bore the same name as the tribe and was sometimes placed on the Congaree opposite Columbia, sometimes on the north side of the river. Congaree History. The Congaree are mentioned in documents of the seventeenth century as one of the small tribes of the Piedmont region. In 1701 Lawson (1860) found them settled on the northeast bank of Santee River below the mouth of the Wateree. They took part against the Whites in the Yamasee War of 1715, and in 1716 over half of them were captured and sent as slaves to the West Indies. The remnant appear to have retreated to the Catawba, for Adair (1930) mentions their dialect as one of those spoken in the Catawba Nation. Congaree Population. The Congaree are estimated by Mooney (1928) at 800 in 1600. A census taken in 1715 gives 22 men and a total population of about 40. Connection in which they have become noted. Congaree River and a railroad station in Richland County, S. C., preserve the name; Columbia, the State capital, was originally known as the...

Congaree Tribe

Congaree Indians. A small tribe, supposed to be Siouan, formerly living in South Carolina. The grounds for including this tribe in the Siouan family are its location and its intimate relation with known Siouan tribes, especially the Catawba, with which it was ultimately incorporated; but according to Adair and Lawson the Congaree spoke a dialect different from that of the Catawba, which they preserved even after their incorporation. In 1693 the Cherokee complained that the Shawnee, Catawba, and Congaree took prisoners from among them and sold them as slaves in Charleston. They were visited in 1701 by Lawson, who found them on the north east bank of Santee river below the junction of the Wateree. Their town consisted of not more than 12 houses, with plantations up and down the country. On a map of 1715 the village of the Congaree is placed on the south bank of Congaree river, about opposite the site of Columbia. A fort bearing the tribal name was established near the village in 1718. They were a small tribe, having lost many by tribal feuds but more by smallpox. Lawson states that, although the several tribes visited by him were generally small and lived closely adjoining one another, they differed in features, disposition, and language, a fact which renders the assignment of these small tribes to the Siouan family conjectural. The Congaree, like their neighbors, took part in the Yamasi war in 1715, as a result of which they were so reduced that they were compelled to move up the country and join the Catawba, with whom they were still living in 1743. Moll’s...

The Sewee, Santee, Wateree, and Congaree Indians

The Santee and its branches, the Wateree and the Congaree, were held by the Sewee, Santee, Wateree, and Congaree tribes, whose territory extended to the neighborhood of the Waxhaw and Catawba. Nothing is known of their linguistic affinities, but their alliances and final incorporation were with the Catawba. Sewee Indians The Sewee occupied the coast and the lower part of the river below the Santee, extending westward to the divide of Ashley river about the present Monks Corner, in Berkeley county, South Carolina, where they adjoined the Etiwaw1 . Their name is preserved in Sewee Bay. Lawson, who met them in 1701, states that they had formerly been a large tribe, but, like the other tribes of Carolina, had been much wasted by smallpox and other diseases, and through the effect of liquor introduced by the whites. The great mortality always produced among them by smallpox was owing chiefly to their universal habit of plunging into the water at the critical stage of the disease in order to ease themselves of the feverish burnings. The destruction of the Sewee was the immediate result of the failure of a great trading scheme which they had elaborated, but which proved disastrous to the originators. Being dissatisfied with the bargains that the traders drove with them, and having noticed that the English vessels always came in at one particular harbor, they concluded that by starting from the same point with their canoes they could easily reach England, which they would not believe was so far off as the whites said, and there do their own trading to better advantage. Accordingly, after having...

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