Snowbird Cherokees

People of Persistence

Sharlotte Neely

Foreword by Gilliam Jackson and Trey Adcock

Title Details

Trim size: 6.000in x 9.000in

Formats

Paperback

Pub Date: 10/01/2021

ISBN: 9-780-8203-6092-8

List Price: $23.95

Snowbird Cherokees

People of Persistence

Sharlotte Neely

Foreword by Gilliam Jackson and Trey Adcock

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Originally published in 1991, Snowbird Cherokees has since inspired a documentary of the same name and remains the only ethnographic study of Snowbird, North Carolina, a remote mountain community of Cherokees who are regarded as simultaneously the most traditional and the most adaptive members of the entire tribe. Through historical research, contemporary fieldwork, and situational analysis, Sharlotte Neely explains the Snowbird paradox and portrays the inhabitants' daily lives and culture. At the core of her study are detailed examinations of two expressions of Snowbird cultural self-awareness: its ongoing struggle for fair political representation on the tribal council and its yearly Trail of Tears Singing, a gathering point for all North Carolina and Oklahoma Cherokees concerned with cultural conservation.

As Gilliam Jackson, a Snowbird Cherokee himself, reflects in the new foreword, Snowbird Cherokees remains a "crucial portrait" of the Snowbird community when the "vast majority of residents spoke the tutiyi dialect." In Jackson's estimation, only fifty-three fluent speakers remain in tutiyi.

Although the Eastern Band of the Cherokee have been written about at length by anthropologists and scholars-from Hernando de Soto's chroniclers to today's anthropologists, and although the Cherokee have figured in novels, poetry, and drama, Sharlotte Neely's work gives us fresh perspective. Snowbird Cherokees not only provides valuable insights into Cherokee culture but also takes a look at a little-known and little-studied Cherokee community in the remote Snowbird Mountains of western North Carolina.

—Georgia Historical Quarterly

About the Author/Editor

SHARLOTTE NEELY is a professor and coordinator of anthropology and the director of Native American studies at Northern Kentucky University. She lives in Cincinnati, Ohio.