Richard Thornton | May 9, 2017 | 23
Alabama Choctaw Becomes NFL Coach
Alabama Choctaw becomes NFL Coach
The State of Alabama is on a roll these days. An Alabama belle from Opelika, enrolled in college in New York City became Miss New York, then Miss America. The Alabama Crimson Tide’s football team is not so shabby. Now, a MOWA Choctaw from western Alabama has become the first Native American to be on an NFL coaching staff.
Lance Taylor played for the Crimson Tide. Despite being only 5’-9” he was consistently a backbone for the team. After graduating from Alabama, he has continued to plug away at his dream. With such determination, his rise into the NFL is undoubtedly just the beginning of a great coaching career.
Read the article about Lance Taylor
The MOWA Choctaws continue to be rejected by the BIA for federal recognition. The reasons given are ludicrous when one considers that there are tiny, federally recognized blue-eyed blonde Indian tribes in New England. As we have seen during the last year in northern Georgia, federal bureaucrats can say all sorts of things authoritatively when the non-Native American operators of Indian casinos are pulling their political strings.
The fact is that the Muscogee-Creek and Seminole Nations are assimilations of at least 27 indigenous peoples from the Southeast, northern Mexico, Central America, South America and the Caribbean. The Cherokees should reinstate bar mitzvahs into their traditions. Some Georgia and eastern Alabama Creek families are also showing up with Sephardic Jewish heritage – presumably from the Jewish gold miners marrying their Creek neighbors in the mountains of Georgia.
There is no excuse for the federal government not recognizing the MOWA Choctaws.
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Richard Thornton is a professional architect, city planner, author and museum exhibit designer-builder. He is today considered one of the nation’s leading experts on the Southeastern Indians. However, that was not always the case. While at Georgia Tech Richard was the first winner of the Barrett Fellowship, which enabled him to study Mesoamerican architecture and culture in Mexico under the auspices of the Institutio Nacional de Antropoligia e Historia. Dr. Roman Piňa-Chan, the famous archaeologist and director of the Museo Nacional de Antropologia, was his fellowship coordinator. For decades afterward, he lectured at universities and professional societies around the Southeast on Mesoamerican architecture, while knowing very little about his own Creek heritage. Then he was hired to carry out projects for the Muscogee-Creek Nation in Oklahoma. The rest is history.Richard is the Tribal Historic Preservation Officer for the KVWETV (Coweta) Creek Tribe and a member of the Perdido Bay Creek Tribe. In 2009 he was the architect for Oklahoma’s Trail of Tears Memorial at Council Oak Park in Tulsa. He is the president of the Apalache Foundation, which is sponsoring research into the advanced indigenous societies of the Lower Southeast.
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- The Secret History of Northeast Alabama - May 22, 2017