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Substantial evidence of an Arawak presence in the Southeastern US

Substantial evidence of an Arawak presence in the Southeastern US

Joey Karei Kumaha’manigua wrote me this letter, which describes the extensive evidence of an Arawak presence in the Southeastern United States.  North of the State of Florida, anthropologists seem unaware that the Arawaks and other peoples from South America were in the Southeast.  Note that he has provided references for all his statements.  Since he went to so much trouble to write the letter, the least that we could do is publish it!

The current situation in Southeastern Anthropology is very frustrating.   While living in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, National Park Service archaeologists found an Adena Village and a Hopewell village on my farm.  When I brought a sample of the artifacts to the Department of Anthropology at the nearby University of Virginia, the professor literally laughed at me and accused me of getting the artifacts in Ohio.    A couple of years later, I began finding artifacts typical of southern Mexico, the Caribbean Basin  and northern South America on construction sites in the Shenandoah River Bottom Lands between Strasburg and Winchester.   I couldn’t even get a professor at U.VA’s Department of Anthropology to talk to me on the phone.   Twenty-five years later, I stumbled upon Sam Kercheval’s History of the Shenandoah Valley.   Turns out that large mounds and “Mexican style artifacts,” as Kercheval called them, were endemic in the Shenandoah Valley, when the first settlers began plowing the ground.   University anthropology professors should have known this fact, but didn’t.


Taino Ti/Greetings:

I am a Taino descendant. I am a member, and Behike/Spiritual Leader of the Yukayeke Guacata of Bimini/Florida. I have followed your information for awhile, and Thank You for the information you have gathered. I would like to share some of the research I have done, and pointed in the right direction by Archeologist Alan Brech. Excited to hear some feedback. Seneko Kakona/Abundant Blessings!!! The Direct connection between Bimini/Florida and the Caribbean, and the evidence of the Indigenous of Bimini and the Indigenous of the Caribbean traded, communicated, and were related.

  • The oldest Papaya seeds found in North America, 2000yr old Chili Pepper seeds, and pollen of Maize or corn found in Pine Island, Fl.
  • The language of the tribes of Bimini was Arawak.
  • Tobacco used in Bimini was a South American variety Nicotinium Rustica.
  • Taino/Carib style burial found in Hutchinson Island, Fl.
  • A axe head found near Gainesville, Fl made of a stone from South America.
  • A gold Jaguar pendant found at Fort Center, Fl(just West of Lake Okeechobee, location of the original Guacata Tribe) along with the same style gardening on top of mounds.
  • Dujos, Makanas, Body Stamps, Mask, Gourds, Ear Spools, and Shell Tools found in Key Marco, Fl.
  • Zoomorphic style pottery at Crystal River, and Weedon Island archeological sites
  • At the Crystal River Archeological Site is home to a limestone slab, possibly a “stele”, on which is a crudely carved human face and torso. This is odd because the slab is one that is not found on other mound sites except in locations such as the Caribbean, South America, and Central America. At this particular site there were at least four of these large stones placed by the inhabitants in their ancient time. 
  • Aon/Dog, the barkless dog Columbus recorded also found in Florida.
  • The distinctive Crested Caracara “combines the raptorial instincts of the eagle with the base carrion-feeding habits of the vulture” (Hudson 1920). Called ignoble, miserable, and aggressive, yet also dashing, stately, and noble, this medium-sized raptor, with its bold black-and-white plumage and bright yellow-orange face and legs, is easily recognizable as it perches conspicuously on a high point in the landscape. In flight it can be distinguished by its regular, powerful wing beats as it cruises low across the ground or just above the treetops. Known locally in some areas as the “Mexican buzzard”, the Crested Caracara is an opportunist and is commonly seen walking about open fields, pastures, and road edges, feeding on a variety of invertebrate and vertebrate prey, as well as on carrion, often in the company of other avian scavengers. The name “caracara” is said to be of Guarani Indian origin, traro-traro, derived from the unusual rattling vocalization that the bird utters when agitated. Found only in the Lake Okeechobee area of Bimini/Florida other than Mesoamerica,  Cuba, and slightly into North America.
  • Conquistador Hernando D’Escalante Fontaneda shipwrecked in South Bimini from the age of 13 to 30yrs old living with the Calusa as well as learning their language documented Taino’s coming from Cuba to the west coast of Bimini, and was still present in 1566. The Kasike was referred to as Kasike Carlos of the Calusa who governed a chain of islands called the Yucayos. And the Tainos in present day Bahamas were called the Lucayos. 
  • A 1100 yr old 40ft canoe found on Weedon Island, Fl confirming over seas travel.

“I have presented at length elsewhere (Sears 1977b) the hypothesis that much of the settlement of Florida, at least that in the wet, freshwater zone from the southern end of the state well up into the northern St. Johns area, is a product of people moving from northern South America through the Antilles well in advance of the Arawak migration. There is some evidence in support of this theory: the use of conch-shell tools in the Archaic period in the St. Johns region; the frequent presence of conch-shell celts and adzes in early contexts in inland South Florida; and the fact that Timucua, the dominant linguistic stock of peninsular Florida, is believed to be of South American derivation (Granberry 1971) (it’s closest relative is apparently Warau, spoken in the Orinoco delta).

A constant relationship is suggested between northern South America and South Florida. At some time, James A. Ford suggested (1966), fiber-tempered pottery, and later discovered variants, were introduced by the same route as that advocated for tools and language. Northern South America is also (Denevan 1970), as I have suggested elsewhere, the home for various terraforming techniques that enable savannah agriculture.

By the date 1,000 B.C., suggested as the time of the beginning settlement at Fort Center, we find available, thanks to the South American savannahs and the Antillean route, a well-adapted population, making fiber-tempered pottery in simple bowl forms. These forms remain characteristic of South Florida throughout its history, a strong contrast to the mainland eastern United States. This aboriginal population possessed more than pots: They cultivated maize, which could be stored to stabilize and seasonally equalize their food supply, and they had a technique for growing it in the savannah, making circles that provided drained fields and possibly a source of fertilizing muck.” –  Archaeologist William H. Sears


  • Archeologist Alan Brech – The Material Culture of Key Marco Florida
  • Marion Spjut Gilliland –
  • Fort Center An Archeological Site in the Lake Okeechobee Basin – William H. Sears
  • Proceedings of the Fifteenth Symposium of the Natural History of the Bahamas



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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.



    Richard-can you please give Joey my contact data-jim


    Richard, These people shown in this photo. have the same skin tone as the ancient Mediterranean people of the Pelasgi of Asia minor, Crete, Greece, and the Danites (ancient Libyans) (Karbana) “dark race” reported by the classic Greeks. They didn’t speak Indo-European … probably Gaelic, most likely had the same skull shape as found in stone / copper age Europe, North Africa and many Natives of the Eastern side of the America’s. Look at the amazing connection between Western Turkey’s stonework and this small island on the Western Mediterranean Sea and the Stonehenge people prior to the arrival of the Bell Beaker:


    my maternal grandmother’s paternal line the Lafayettes came from Georgia to the Letohatchee area of Lowndes county, Al where Tawassee Pointe is located and commercial DNA test show we have quite a few Puerto Rican matches


    Hey Richard T., Here’s a very interesting article you might want to take a closer look at.

    The following article was posted on May 6, 2019 on the ‘Great Falls Tribune’ website:

    “Blackfeet man’s DNA oldest found in Americas, testing company says” by Kristen Inbody

    The article is about a ‘Blackfeet’ native named Darrell (Dusty) Crawford.
    “Crawford had his DNA tested through CRI Genetics, which aims to provide customers with a “biogeographical ancestry,” a description of where their genes fit into the overall story of the species.”
    “For Crawford, the company traced his line back 55 generations with a 99 percent accuracy rate.”
    “He’s part of MtDNA Haplogroup B2, which has a low frequency in Alaska and Canada and originated in Arizona about 17,000 years ago.”
    “That group is one of four major Native American groups that spread across the continent. They’re called clans and traced back to four female ancestors, Ai, Ina, Chie and Sachi. Crawford’s DNA says he’s a descendant of Ina.”
    “The DNA group’s closest relatives outside the Americas are in Southeast Asia.”
    “Its path from the Americas is somewhat of a mystery as there are no frequencies of the haplogroup in either Alaska or Canada. Today this Native American line is found only in the Americas, with a strong frequency peak on the eastern coast of North America,” according to the DNA testing company.”

    It’s unclear how accurate the Great Falls Tribune article (articles?) is, yet if the article is accurate it will add an important piece of information in answering the peopling of America question.

    – The mtDNA B2 closest relative is found in Eastern Southeast Asia which are all the islands east of the Wallace line where the region is also known as Wallacea.
    – While Crawford’s DNA story suggest his ancestors came from the Pacific, traveled to the coast of South America and traveled north; this Native American line (meaning Crawford’s particular mtDNA B2 branch) is found only in the Americas, with a strong frequency peak on the eastern coast of North America which is very interesting since the DNA entered the Americas from the Pacific into westcoast South America and ended up on the eastcoast North America.
    – There are many branches of mtDNA B2 in the Americas including B2b1 in Venezuela, B2b3a in Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Kayapo and B2y in Peru (Andes).
    – If the data regarding mtDNA B2 found on the eastcoast of North America is correct it could be proof that mtDNA B2 migrated towards the north via the Caribbean basin possibly from tribes perhaps Arawaks (once?) living in and or surrounding what is known as Venezuela today.

    Richard T., Could it be that the so-called Polynesian-/Maori-like DNA found in your cousin is actually part of mtDNA B2 also known as subclade B4b? Remember the socalled Polynesian motif is mtDNA B4a1a1 and the multitude of branches including the Maori motifs B4a1a1c, B4a1a1a3 and B4a1a1a5.
    Although unlikely it would be interesting to see if some people (tribes?) from the Americas with mtDNA B2 (B4b) migrated back into the Pacific and gave rise to the Maori motifs mtDNA B4a1a1c, B4a1a1a3 and B4a1a1a5. Maybe the mtDNA B2 branch evolved in a similar way it the original Polynesian motif evolved making both branches ‘almost’ identical. Remember the Polynesian motif is believed to have came into existence in Melanesia practically on the surrounding islands north-/northeast off Papua New Guinea. Yes, Australo-Melanesian DNA is also present in South America; meaning Australo-Melanesian DNA + mtDNA B2 could possibly have given rise to a Polynesian-like motif in the Americas.

    “Blackfeet man’s DNA oldest found in Americas, testing company says” May 6, 2019 – by Kristen Inbody


      The same company labels most of my 1.5% Native as Peruvian(1.1%) entering my family around the year 1700Ad


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