Chakchiuma Indians

Chakchiuma Tribe: Proper spelling Shåktci homma, meaning “Red Crawfish People.”

Chakchiuma Connections. They spoke a dialect closely related to Choctaw and Chickasaw. Their nearest relatives were the Houma, who evidently separated from them in very recent times.

Chakchiuma Location. In the eighteenth century on Yalobusha River where it empties into the Yazoo but at an early period extending to the head of the Yalobusha and eastward between the territories of the Choctaw and Chickasaw tribes as far as West Point.

Chakchiuma Subdivisions. A French map dated about 1697 seems to call that section of the tribe on Yazoo River, Sabougla, though these may have been a branch of the Sawokli. (See Georgia.)

Chakchiuma History. According to tradition, this tribe came from the west at the same time as the Chickasaw and Choctaw and settled between them. When De Soto was among the Chickasaw, an expedition was directed against the Chakchiuma “who the [Chickasaw) Cacique said had rebelled,” but their town was abandoned and on fire. It was claimed that they had planned treachery against the Spaniards. The chief of the tribe at this time was Miko Lusa (Black Chief). After the French settlement of Louisiana a missionary was killed by these people and in revenge the French stirred up the neighboring tribes to attack them. They are said to have been reduced very considerably in consequence. Afterward, they remained closely allied with the French, assisted them after the Natchez outbreak, and their chief was appointed leader of the Indian auxiliaries in the contemplated attack upon the Chickasaw in 1739. The animosity thus excited probably resulted in their destruction by the Chickasaw and absorption into the Chickasaw and Choctaw tribes. From De Crenay’s map it appears that a part had. gone to live with the Chickasaw by 1733.

The rest may have gone to the Choctaw, for a band bearing their name constituted an important division of that nation. Tradition states that they were destroyed by united efforts of the Chickasaw and Choctaw, but the latter were uniformly allied with the French and hostile to the Chickasaw when this alliance is supposed been in existence.

Chakchiuma Population. Mooney (1928) estimates 1,200 souls among the Chakchiuma, Ibitoupa, Taposa, and Tiou in 1650; exclusive of the Tiou, my own would be 750. In 1699 they are said to have occupied 70 cabins. In 1702 it is claimed that there were 400 families, which in 1704 had been reduced to 80, but probably the first figure is an exaggeration. About 1718-30 there were 50 Chakchiuma cabins and in 1722 the total population is placed at 150.


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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