Cherokee Messenger
February 2000

CCS Monthly Meeting

Thursday, March 2, 2000, 7:00 p.m.
Meeting Speaker: Jack D. Baker, Trail of Tears Association.

Join our monthly meeting as we hear from an outstanding Cherokee author, historian and genealogist. He will relate special projects of the Association, including ambitious efforts to mark graves of those who had survived the Trail of Tears and were buried in Oklahoma. The coeditor of the three volume edition of The Notes of Dr. Emmet Starr, Mr. Baker also transcribed the Cherokee Emigration Rolls, 1817-1835. He currently serves on the Cherokee Heritage Center board and is President of both the Goingsnake District Heritage Association and the Friends of the Oklahoma State Archives.

CCS Meeting Location: The Tracy Gee Community Center, 3599 Westcenter, one block south of Richmond, east of the Sam Houston Tollway West Belt. Guests are always eligible for the door prize awarded that night.

Upcoming CCS Monthly Programs

Topics and speakers may change

Other Events & Projects

As with all pow wows and other events, double check before making travel plans; events may change unexpectedly.

Plan Now!

5:00 p.m. on Sunday, March 19, 2000 is the next planning meeting/potluck supper for the Red Nations Remembering event of April 2, 2000. Contact Judith Bruni for details and to offer help with this exciting annual community projec. Phone: 281-556-1908 E-mail:

Basket Weaving Bonanza & Potluck Lunch: 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., Sunday, March 12, 2000, at the home of Deborah Scott in the Houston Heights (contact for directions, 713-861-6667 or e-mail

Red Nations Remembering will feature the crowd-pleasing basket weaving corner, where visitors will have a quick lesson in the craft, receive their own starter basket and take home an authentic souvenir. We need all available hands to construct the base of each basket before we get to RNR. Join this fun and easy Sunday session while we wind our way around lots of "starters" and prepare for the big April 2 event!

Our CCS basket weaving corner is now a fundraiser, in view of its popularity at the November, 1999 Museum of Natural Science Heritage Day. The January basket weaving work session was cancelled due to snow in Oklahoma, which prevented Deborah from returning to Houston for that day.

Scouts to Assist in Project: We ask readers who have Girl Scouts in their families or neighborhoods to encourage them to participate in the basket weaving session during the Women's Shawl Society meeting at the Stomp Grounds, Saturday, March 11, from 10 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. It can be a great learning experience. Potluck lunch is the order of the day, and anyone can attend, BOYS AND GIRLS! For directions to the site or for questions, contact: Barbra "BJ" Callihan, Vice President, (h) 713-541-4170.

"Cherokees in the Millennium": Preserving Our Culture, Educating Our Community

Most readers know by now that contemporary Cherokees are found everywhere, in all walks of life and with many different attributes. The general public is fascinated by Native Americans. To answer many requests for public appearances, especially from schools and colleges, the CCS Board recently established a speakers' bureau. Board members soon realized a video about CCS would be a great educational tool and a means to preserve who we are and what we have accomplished during our Houston organizational history. Board member Jimmy Melton has volunteered to staff the video camera as we offer individual interviews to build our living archive. Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chad Smith has agreed to contribute an introduction to the video. During our July monthly meeting we will hear a guest speak on recording effective oral histories, and the August meeting will complete the video interviews. It is an energetic year for CCS we will all enjoy!

Cherokee Cultural Society Members:

Now is the time to order your personalized CCS name plate, engraved with your name, featuring a magnetic tear proof backing which is user friendly to all garments. It is a great means to let people know who you are at all special events and meetings.

Newcomers: Become a CCS member for $20/year and you too can order the new ID name plates. Orders are being taken now through the March 2 meeting. Contact for cost and other details: Barbra Callihan at 713-541-4170.

Web Gems

Resources mentioned in this newsletter are intended only for informational purposes and not as endorsements of products or services. They are included as interesting and potentially useful items for our readers.

Poetry Corner

Meet an Interesting Cherokee:
The following poem is from an Internet friend of mixed Cherokee and white lineage who lives in Ruby, TX, just north of the Alabama-Coushatta Reservation. Christy Crusott "Stormdancer" wrote it while watching the January 20, 2000 eclipse of the moon and e-mailed it to friends and relatives. "It is for Cherokees primarily, and everyone else willing to carry the vision and dreams, secondarily," she writes. Christy studied the Wisdom of the Seneca for seven years because she could not locate a Tsalagi elder at that time. Currently she serves as a probation officer and has been a chemical dependency counselor. A grandmother who was widowed in November after 30 years of marriage, she recently received a call from two college friends who work at the Reservation Social Services. They asked her to help the Native American Sobriety Movement start an AA meeting there. Says Christy, "I am a strong believer in tradition and ceremony." Recently, she did "a releasing ceremony, to say good-bye to the old life, the old loves, and the old world." "When I drove in to Lufkin, this morning [after the eclipse], the sky was a new sky, and the Moon, whom I learned to call Neesa, and Grandmother, in the Seneca way, was bright and clean."

LUNA by Christy Crusott/ "Stormdancer"
Meet me in the Medicine Wheel
We will watch the eclipse together
From the Void of Darkness
Dreams are born
In Chaos, Creation comes
Tonight is a portal
It is time we manifest
The dreams we have been carrying
A new world
Born out of an old world
A return to Ancient Ways
In Honor of our Mother
And our Ancestors
Together we all
Will create this new world
Together all of us
Will give birth to the
Dreams of our Ancestors
And the Unborn

Jim Thorpe Voted Athlete of The Century

According to ABC Sports Tuesday, February 01, 2000, the late Oklahoman and multi-talented star athlete Jim Thorpe has been named ABC "Athlete of the Century" from an ESPN and ABC public vote for the honor conducted during January, 2000 at the ESPN website.

Thorpe was the winner of the 1912 Olympic decathlon and pentathlon. With 8,412 points, he broke the decathlon world record by 998. Later Thorpe was forced to return the medals because he had played semiprofessional baseball in 1909. He was voted the Greatest Athlete of the first half of the century by the Associated Press in 1950 and was named the greatest football player, beating out Red Grange. Besides starring in football and track at the Carlisle Indian Industrial School (1903-12), Thorpe excelled in other sports, including basketball, lacrosse, baseball, golf, swimming, rowing, hockey and boxing. He played major league baseball as an outfielder for six years (1913-1919) and dominated professional football from 1917 to 1929. In 1984 the International Olympic Committee returned the gold medals to Thorpe's family. By the January 30, 2000 deadline, the number of votes cast for Jim Thorpe surpassed those for Michael Jordan, famous for only one sport, and baseball great Babe Ruth. See for more complete information on this sports legend. Many thanks to CCS Board member Cindy Linnenkohl for bringing this notice to our attention in early January, in plenty of time to vote!


The Cherokee Cultural Society of Houston is a registered nonprofit organization which is totally independent of all other Native American Indian organizations, locally, regionally and nationally. We do support the efforts of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma. Anyone with questions regarding CCS support of or affiliation with any Native endeavors, on a local or national scale, please contact us for clarification: Judith Bruni, President,, or Vicki Henrichs, newsletter editor, CCS thanks everyone for continued support of our organization, which has flourished since 1992.

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