1 Reply Latest reply on Jul 8, 2020 3:12 PM by Rebecca Collier

    Seeking Cherokee ancestors


      I am interested in locating the Cherokee Nation tribal records. My auntie showed me a picture of my great grandmother who was of Native American heritage. She told me she was a Cherokee Indian. I am trying to trace my Native heritage. Unfortunately, all I have is my father's name and his siblings' names. How do I get started?

        • Re: Seeking Cherokee ancestors
          Rebecca Collier Ranger

          Dear Ms. Thomas,


          Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!


          The variety of census rolls created during the removal period begin in 1835 and the earlier ones often only list the head of household. Some registers for those who remained in the east and emigration rolls that date back to 1817 just list the head of household as well..


          We searched the National Archives Catalog and located a series titled Eastern Cherokee Census Rolls, 1835-1884 in the Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs (Record Group 75) that has been digitized and is available via the Catalog.


          We also located a series titled Census Rolls, 1815-1869 in Record Group 75 that has not been digitized or microfilmed. For access to and/or copies of this series, please contact the National Archives at Washington - Textual Reference (RDT1) via email at archives1reference@nara.gov and also inquire about other relevant BIA series regarding the Cherokee..


          If your Cherokee relatives moved west due to the removal, there are 115 additional series in Record Group 75 that you may wish to review. For access to these series, please contact the National Archives at Denver (RM-DV) via email at denver.archives@nara.gov.


          Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and pursuant to guidance received from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), NARA has adjusted its normal operations to balance the need of completing its mission-critical work while also adhering to the recommended social distancing for the safety of NARA staff. As a result of this re-prioritization of activities, you may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgement as well as a substantive response to your reference request from RDT1 and RM-DV. We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.


          For more information, please review American Indian Records in the National Archives web pages.


          We hope this is helpful. Best of luck with your family research!


          [Some information provided by Cody White, Subject Matter Expert]

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