Yazoo Indians

Yazoo Tribe: Meaning unknown.

Yazoo Connections.-The associations of this tribe with the Koroa and the fact that their language contained an r sound make reasonably certain that they belonged to the Tunican group and stock.

Yazoo Location. On the south side of Yazoo River about 4 French leagues above its mouth. (See also Arkansas.)

Yazoo History. The Yazoo appear to have been the first of the tribes living on the lower part of the Yazco River to have established themselves there, and hence it was from them that the stream received its name. They are mentioned by La Salle and his companions in connection with their voyage to the mouth of the Mississippi in 1682. A French post was established near them in 1718, and in 1727 a Jesuit missionary, Father Seuel, settled nearby. In 1729, however, the Yazoo joined the Natchez in their uprising, murdered the missionary, and massacred the French garrison. Their subsequent fortunes were identical with those of the Koroa, and they were probably absorbed into the Chickasaw or Choctaw. It is not improbable that there is some connection between the name of this tribe and that of two of the Yazoo towns among the Choctaw, but if so it goes back beyond recorded history.

Yazoo Population. I have estimated that in 1698 there were somewhat more than 600 Yazoo and Koroa together. In 1700 Gravier reported 30 Yazoo cabins, but a quarter of a century later Le Page du Pratz (1758) estimated 100. In 1722 the Yazoo, Koroa, and Ofo together are said to have numbered 250. In 1730, however, the number of Yazoo and Koroa warriors is placed at 40.

Connection in which they have become noted. The Yazoo are noted principally from the fact that they have transmitted their name to Yazoo River, Miss., and secondarily to Yazoo County and its capital city, in the same State.


Swanton, John R. The Indian Tribes of North America. Bureau of American Ethnology, Bulletin 145. Washington DC: US Government Printing Office. 1953.

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