History of Pamunkey Indian Tribe
Tribal members will agree that the history of the Pamunkey Indian Tribe dates back to even before the English settlers first landed on Virginia’s shores, perhaps even ten to twelve thousand years, but written history begins around that time in 1607.
BIA issues preliminary decision in favor of Pamunkey Tribe
MONDAY, JANUARY 20, 2014
"The Pamunkey Tribe of Virginia has won preliminary approval of its federal recognition petition, a first in a state where officials tried to eradicate all traces of non-Indian identity. [They mean Indian, *not* non-Indian. VA changed and destroyed documents like mad, especially in the 20th century. - C.]
The tribe met all seven criteria for recognition, the Bureau of Indian Affairs announced on Friday. The proposed finding came after more than four years of consideration by the Office of Federal Acknowledgment.
'The petitioner has occupied a land base in southeastern King William County, Virginia - shown on a 1770 map as 'Indian Town' - since the Colonial Era in the 1600s and exists today as a state Indian reservation,” the BIA said in a press release”
It was a Crown Reservation before that, which they’ve continuously been paying symbolic rent on to the Governor of Virginia every single year since the 17th century. They couldn’t weasel out of that treaty, so the state just tried to wipe them (and the rest with similar treaties) out on paper. And forcibly sterilize people, etc.
Virginia only gave them state recognition in 1983, as part of the first group *ever*. I was in elementary school (in VA) before Pocahontas’ people got officially recognized by the Commonwealth of Virginia. When some of them were living on what was left of their Crown Reservation, all along. The shad hatchery is all well and good, but nobody non-Native seems to want to talk about this stuff.
I’m pleasantly surprised they are meeting BIA criteria, since nobody in VA (and a lit of the rest of the East) ever made treaties with the US government. It was all with the British Crown, and the Governor as representative. That was a lot of the holdup in seeking federal recognition, AFAICT.
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