Powhatan Tribe Divisions

Appomattoc. A tribe of the Powhatan confederacy formerly living on lower Appomattox River, Virginia. They had 60 warriors in 1608, and were of some importance as late as 1671, but were extinct by 1722.

Their principal village, which bore the same name was on the site of Bermuda Hundred, Prince George County, was burned by the English in 1611.  Appomatox was also one of the terms applied to the Matchotic, a later combination of remnants of the same confederacy.

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Chickahominy (from K’chick-ahän-min’-nough, ‘course-pounded corn people.’ ‘hominy people’ Tooker; or from Tshi-kĕjämĕn, a place name meaning ‘swept,’ “cleared,’ and implying a clearing—Gerard).

A tribe of the Powhatan confederacy, formerly living on Chickahominy River, Virginia. It was one of the most important tribes in Virginia, numbering 250 warriors, or perhaps 900 souls, in 1608, and was not so directly under the control of Powhatan as the other tribes over which he ruled. In 1613 they entered into an alliance with the English and assumed the name of Tassautessus (sic), or “Englishmen.” In 1669 they were still estimated at 60 warriors, possibly 220 souls, but in 1722 were reported to number only about 80. Their last public notice occurs in this same year, when, in connection with the Pamunkey, they were named in the Albany conference with the Iroquois as among the Virginia tribes not to be molested by the latter. A mixed-blood band numbering about 220 still keeps up the name, but without regular tribal organization, on both sides of Chickahominy River in New Kent and Charles City County, Virginia, with Wm. H. Adkins as chief in 1905. They are on close terms of association with the neighboring bands of Pamunkey and Mattapony.

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Matchotic (‘bad inlet.’-Hewitt). A group of tribes of the Powhatan confederacy occupying. the country between Potomac and Rappahannock rivers down to about the middle of Richmond county, Virginia, comprising the Tauxenent, Potomac, Cuttatawomen, Pissasec, and Onawmanient. They numbered perhaps 400 warriors in 1608, but 60 years later, according to Jefferson, had become reduced to 60 warriors.

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Weanoc. A tribe of the Powhatan confederacy, formerly living in Charles City County, Virginia, on the north bank of James river. In 1608 they numbered about 500. They seem to have crossed over to the south bank of James river toward the close of the 17th century, perhaps in consequence of a disastrous attack from the Iroquois in 1687. In 1722 Beverley stated that their former settlement in Prince George County, south of the James, was extinct, and in 1727 it was stated that they had lived at different times on upper Nottoway river and on a tributary stream, then called Wyanoke creek, near the North Carolina frontier. Nottoway river was also at one time known by their name.

Consult Further:


Hodge, Frederick Webb, Compiler. The Handbook of American Indians North of Mexico. Bureau of American Ethnology, Government Printing Office. 1906.

1 thought on “Powhatan Tribe Divisions”

  1. My Aunt by marriage. Now deceased, Mae Adkin.
    Her mother was a Bradbury sp?
    100% Native American. She died in her 90’s.
    Card carting Chicahomy & Pumonkey.
    I have dates of her birthday in Virginia and her death in Redding, Shasta co , California. I have her F & Mother’s data as well.
    Sorry for the misspellings.
    calllv.koot7@gmail.com (3-L’s)

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