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Cherokee Clans: An Informal History [Paperback]

Donald N. Panther-Yates

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Price: $6.95

Cherokee Clans: An Informal History [Paperback]


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The Cherokee Clans are unique, not paralleled in any other tribes.  Handed down in strict matrilinear fashion, each person’s clan is the same as the mother’s.

There used to be strict prohibitions against marrying  within it. The Seven are Wolf (Ani-Wahiya), Bird (Ani-Tsiskwa), Deer (Ani-Kawi), Twister (Ani-Gilohi), Wild Potato (Ani-Gotegewi), Panther (Ani-Sahoni) and Paint (Ani-Wodi).  Although sometimes combined with the Panther Clan, the Bear Clan is usually ignored in the scheme.

Suppressed by the reforms of affluent half-breed planters following the death of Dragging Canoe in 1792, the Cherokee clans and their secrets went underground, so that by the twentieth century, few Cherokees, even full bloods, knew much about them.

If you are a Cherokee descendant, you have a clan. Are you from the Teachers? The Warriors? The clan of the peace chiefs? The speakers, singers and dancers? The “Terrible Ones”?



Donald Panther-Yates, who is Paint Clan, has assembled in these notes the first book-length treatment of a lost social order and ancient identity.

Cherokee Chapbooks Series No. 4


Edition 2nd
Format Paperback
Illustrated Yes
Number of pages 48
Author Donald N. Panther-Yates
Size 6 X 9 inches
ISBN 978-0615798271
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3 reviews for Cherokee Clans: An Informal History [Paperback]

  1. Rating by June Hurd on April 24, 2013 :

    This is very well done. With permission we are reprinting parts in the Central Band of Cherokee newsletter. Thank you Dr. Donald Yates. June Hurd

  2. Rating by Brian Wilkes on May 7, 2013 :

    The legendary origin of the galquogi itsuniyvwi (Seven Clans) has been a subject of speculation and dispute for generations. The Clan system allowed for checks and balances to restrict the power of the larger clans. Even the number and true names of the various clans has been disputed, with numbers ranging from five to over forty.

    Into this turgid flow Dr. Yates brings his own perspective and linguistic background, opening some new avenues for research in an easy to follow, non-academic writing style. The origin of the Cherokee people, and whether there actually WAS an identifiable Cherokee identity before 1718. Dr. Yates takes it a step farther, by showing possible links for Cherokee terms in South American, Eastern Mediterranean, and Polynesian languages. Legends of an ocean migration and an original home across the seas, to which the Cherokee will someday return, are a continuing source of fascination to researchers, and Dr. Yates is clearly no exception.

  3. Rating by Jan Franz on May 7, 2013 :

    Dr. Yates once again writes in interesting and engaging form about the origins and meanings of the Tsalagi clans system. He does so with educational, personal and anthropological insight which is unique to Dr. Yates’ background in groundbreaking DNA/scientific and anthropologic genealogy. In this book unfolds a perspective unique to Dr. Yates’ available style of writing in addition to a depth of information I have not found to date. Even if you are not Cherokee, should you have interest in Native Clan systems. this is a must read. The clans systems of Native tribes are predicated on different meaning and symbology across North American and Dr. Yates has accomplished a well studied history and explanation of the Cherokee Clan system in this book. Get it- you will not be disappointed. (this review is by a Native American)

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