Elias Boudinot (Cherokee)

Elias Boudinot (Cherokee)

Elias Boudinot (born Gallegina Uwati, also known as Buck Watie) (1802 – June 22, 1839), was a member of a prominent family of the Cherokee Nation in present-day Georgia. Educated in New England, he was one of several leaders who believed that acculturation was critical to Cherokee survival; he was influential in the period of removal to the West. In 1828 Boudinot became the editor of the Cherokee Phoenix, the first Native American newspaper. It published in Cherokee and English, to showcase Cherokee achievements as well as to build unity within the Nation while under United States pressure for Indian Removal.

In 1826 Boudinot had married Harriet R. Gold, the daughter of a prominent family in Cornwall, Connecticut. He met her while a student at the Foreign Mission School in town. Following his cousin John Ridge's marriage to a New England woman there in 1825, Boudinot's marriage was controversial and opposed by many townspeople. The Cherokee National Council had passed a law in 1825 enabling the descendants of Cherokee fathers and white mothers to be full citizens of the Cherokee.(Formerly they had no place in the matrilineal tribe, as children belong to their mother's clan and people.) The Boudinots returned to Georgia to live at New Echota. They reared their six children as Cherokee.

Boudinot believed that removal was inevitable and argued for a treaty to preserve Cherokee rights. He and other treaty supporters signed the Treaty of New Echota in 1835, but it was not signed by John Ross, the Principal Chief, and was opposed by most of the tribe. The following year the tribe was forced to cede most of its lands in the Southeast, and remove to the West.

After Harriet died in 1836, Boudinot moved with his children to Indian Territory. He and three other Treaty Party leaders were assassinated in June 1839 by Cherokee opponents of removal, who believed it was a capital crime to alienate their homeland. His son Elias Cornelius Boudinot was sent East to be raised by his mother's family and educated there.

Read more about Elias Boudinot (Cherokee):  Early Life and Education, Marriage and Family, Career As Editor, Influence On Indian Removal, Later Years

Famous quotes containing the word boudinot:

    If you think it will only add one sprig to the wreath the country twines to bind the brows of my hero, I will run the risk of being sneered at by those who criticize female productions of all kinds. ...Though a female, I was born a patriot.
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