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Youtube: 5 minute overview of Creek history and the People of One Fire

Youtube:  5 minute overview of Creek history and the People of One Fire


This short video provides an overview of the 4,000 years of history that created the contemporary Uchee and Creek Peoples.   Special emphasis is placed on the archival proof that People of One Fire was the actual name of the Creek Confederacy.  It includes a direct quote from High King Chikili in his speech to the leaders of the Province of Georgia.   A problem has arisen because now Cherokees are claiming that the People of One Fire is their traditional name.   They are even posting songs on Youtube called, “Cherokees . . . the People of One Fire.  The Cherokee People of One Fire websites and Youtube postings use as “proof” a bogus exhibit of pottery that occurred nine years ago, which was called “People of One Fire . . . 6,000 Years of Cherokee Pottery in North Carolina.

People of One Fire . . . 6,000 years of Cherokee Pottery in North Carolina was a pottery exhibit that toured the nation in 2007, after its initial debut at the North Carolina State Museum in Raleigh. Despite our extreme objections, the sponsors stole our organization’s name for the title, not realizing that it was also the real name of the Creek Confederacy.  They refused to change the name of the exhibit after being notified that People of One Fire had a copyright.   I didn’t have money to hire a lawyer to sue the State of North Carolina in federal court.

Of course, the oldest pottery in North America is found along the Savannah River in southeast Georgia and southern South Carolina.  The oldest pieces have been dated to around 2,400 BC.  In my grammar school in Waycross, Jawja, we’uns were taught how to add and subtract.  Therefore, 2400 BC + 2000 AD = 4,400 years, not 6,000 years.

The show was billed as an exhibit of North Carolina indigenous pottery.   We did some investigating.  I first noticed that much of the newer pottery came from locations in North Carolina, where the Cherokees never lived.  Then I obtained a list of credits for the older pottery.  All of the Stallings Island, Deptford, Cartersville Check-Stamped, Swift Creek Complicated Stamp, Napier, Woodstock, Etowah Complicated Stamp and Lamar pottery actually came from Proto-Creek archaeological sites in Georgia.  

I challenged a sophomoric, insolent Cherokee gal at the museum, who helped set up the original exhibit, about the labeling of Georgia pottery as being from North Carolina. Her response was that “it was a fact documented by all archaeologists that the Cherokees once occupied all the Southeast, so the pottery was still made by Cherokees.”  

Since the People of One Fire exhibit, Cherokees have also been claiming that their ancestors invented the first pottery in the Americas, because Stallings Island Pottery was featured at the exhibit and labeled as being Cherokee pottery from North Carolina. They don’t know that the Stallings Island pottery came from Stallings Island near Augusta, GA and that the absolutely oldest pottery in the Americas is found in the Amazon River Basin of Brazil.   Oh well!


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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.



    Hi Richard, Where can I see these short videos ? I have looked on U tube under” People of One Fire”. Also the heading of the actual article. You have posted quite a few and I cannot get any of them. Is this because of the fact I am in Greece and they don’t cover this country.

    • Youtube covers the world, except in countries, where dictatorships have banned it. I will send you a direct link to the latest video and see if you can open it.


        Dear Richard Thornton,

        I have an artifact. I would like to have a phone conversation with you about it.

        Al Davis
        404 309 3804

        • I am not an archaeologist. If you need an artifact analyzed, you need to contact the Georgia Division of Historic Preservation, Archaeological Section.


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We are now celebrating the 11th year of the People of One Fire. In that time, we have seen a radical change in the way people receive information. The magazine industry has almost died. Printed newspapers are on life support. Ezines, such as POOF, replaced printed books as the primary means to present new knowledge. Now the media is shifting to videos, animated films of ancient towns, Youtube and three dimensional holograph images.

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