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Quapaw Indian Tribe

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Quapaw Indian Genealogy


Quapaw (from Ugákhpa, 'downstream people'). A southwestern Siouan tribe, forming one of the two divisions of the Dhegiha group of Dorsey. At the time of separation the Quapaw are supposed to have gone down the Mississippi, and the Omaha group, including the Omaha, Kansa, Ponca, and Osage, up the Missouri. There is undoubtedly a close linguistic and ethnic relation between the Quapaw and the other four tribes. The recorded history of this tribe is commonly supposed to begin with the chronicles of 'De Soto's expedition (1539-43). In the relation of the Gentleman of Elvas and that of Biedma, they or their chief band are mentioned under the name Pacaha, and in that by Garcilasso de la Vega under the name Capaha, the latter being nearer the true pronunciation, though the author wrote only from information and manuscripts furnished, while the former two were members of the expedition. The people of the tribe, or rather of one portion or division of it, were found in a strongly fortified village, which one of the chroniclers, probably with some exaggeration describes as "very great, walled, and beset with towers." He adds: "Many loopholes were in the towers and wall a great lake came near unto the wall, and it entered into a ditch that went round about the town, wanting but little to environ it around. From the lake to the great river [Mississippi] was made a weir by which the fish came into it" (French, Hist. Coll. La., pt. 2, 172, 1850). He further says: "And in the town was great store of old maize and great quantity of new in the fields [the date was June 19]. Within a league were great towns, all walled." Their village was on the west bank of the Mississippi, north of Arkansas river, within the limits of the present Arkansas, probably in Phillips county. Read more...

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