Richard Thornton | Aug 9, 2017 | 5
Ancestor was in the Chehaw Massacre
This reader’s ancestor was in the Chehaw Massacre
When I was a young boy my Grandmother told me a family story of the Chehaw massacre. My GG Grandfather was involved in the massacre. He was a Georgia militia member and was living in what is now Worth County, Georgia. His wife (my GG Grandmother) was Mahala an Indian lady from near Augusta. When he saw the slaughter taking place he was sick and took a young Indian baby and left to keep her from being killed. My Grandmother said that they were bashing the babies and little children’s heads against trees. He and his wife raised the baby as one of their children.
The Boy Scout Council for this part of Georgia was named Chehaw Council and it existed from the 1930s until the end of this October when it merged with another Council. The combined council will not be named Chehaw.
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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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