Tahlequa Daily Press: Tribal councilor explains 'allotment' experience

Dr. Candessa Tehee, associate professor of Cherokee and Indigenous Studies and Cherokee Nation District 2 Tribal councilor, contributed to an edited volume about her family’s allotment story.

More than two dozen essays of Indigenous resistance to the privatization and allotment of Indigenous landsAllotment Stories: Indigenous Land Relations Under Settler Siege was edited by Daniel Heath Justice and Jean M. O’Brien and published by the University of Minnesota Press in 2022. It contains many stories of families who experienced allotment.

“Allotment originates with a need to reduce the land that was held by Native Americans,” said Tehee.

She said that during the 1880s, the U.S. government was motivated to open land held by Indigenous peoples to the general population

“There is a real hunger for the land. There was an attitude that non-Indian ownership of land would increase the degree of civilization. There was this notion that promoting individuation among Indian peoples was going to be something that was positive,” she said.

Article in Tahlequa Daily Press.