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Pensacola Indians

Pensacola Tribe. Meaning “hair people,” probably from their own tongue, which in that case was very close to Choctaw. Pensacola Connections. The name itself, and other bits of circumstantial evidence, indicate that the Pensacola belonged to the Muskhogean stock and, as above noted, probably spoke a dialect close to Choctaw. Pensacola Location. In the neighborhood of Pensacola Bay. (See also Mississippi.) Pensacola History. In 1528 the survivors of the Narvaez expedition had an encounter with Indians near Pensacola Bay who probably belonged to this tribe. It is also probable that their territory constituted the province of Achuse or Ochus which Maldonado, the commander of De Soto’s fleet, visited in 1539 and whence he brought a remarkably fine “blanket of sable fur.” In 1559 a Spanish colony under Tristan de Luna landed in a port called “the Bay of Ichuse,” (or “Ychuse”) undoubtedly in the same province, but the enterprise was soon given up and the colonists returned to Mexico. The Pensacola tribe seems to be mentioned first by name in Spanish letters dated 1677. In 1686 we learn they were at war with the Mobile Indians. Twelve years afterward, when the Spanish post of Pensacola was established, it is claimed that the tribe had been exterminated by other peoples, but this is an error. It had merely moved farther inland and probably toward the west. They are noted from time to time, and in 1725-6 Bienville (1932, vol. 3, p. 535) particularly describes the location of their village near that of the Biloxi of Pearl River. The last mention of them seems to be in an estimate of Indian...

Pensacola Tribe

Pensacola Indians (Choctaw: ‘hair-people,’ from pansha ‘hair,’ okla ‘people’) A tribe once inhabiting tracts around the present city and harbor of Pensacola, west Florida. According to Barcia they had been destroyed by tribal wars before the Spaniards became established there in 1698, but from a reference in Margry it appears that a few still remained at a later period.

Pensacola Indian Tribe

Immediately west of the Sawokli, the Spanish “Province of Sabacola,” lived anciently the Pensacola. Their name, properly Paⁿshi okla, “Bread People,” is Choctaw or from a closely related tongue, but we know next to nothing regarding the people themselves. Our earliest information of value concerning any of the people of this coast is contained in the relation of Cabeza de Vaca, who encountered them in 1528 on his way westward from the Apalachee country by sea with the remains of the Narvaez expedition. Although none of the tribes which the explorers met is mentioned by name there is every reason to believe that one of them was the Pensacola. He says: That bay from which we started is called the Bay of the Horses. We sailed seven days among those inlets, in the water waist deep, without signs of anything like the coast. At the end of this time we reached an island near the shore. My barge went ahead, and from it we saw five Indian canoes coming. The Indians abandoned them and left them in our hands, when they saw that we approached. The other barges went on and saw some lodges on the same island, where we found plenty of ruffs and their eggs, dried, and that was a very great relief in our needy condition. Having taken them, we went further, and two leagues beyond found a strait between the island and the coast, which strait we christened San Miguel, it being the day of that saint. Issuing from it we reached the coast, where by means of the five canoes I had taken from...

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