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Arts and Culture
4:44 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

North Cherokee Nation members reunite in Columbia

New members to the tribe are given a feather to symbolize their membership. The feather is painted to look like an eagle feather, because it is illegal to use real ones.
Meredith Turk KBIA

A couple dozen members of The North Cherokee Nation of the Old Louisiana Territory took part in an annual reunion in Columbia last weekend.

The tribe has about 10,000 members scattered across the country, but are headquartered in Columbia, Mo.  Beverly Baker has served as the chief of the nation for 27 years and has worked to uncover the tribe’s history, which she says dates back to Spanish documents from 1721.

“I was one of the fortunate ones who found my Cherokee ancestry on the first Cherokee roll of 1835.  So I am very fortunate in that way,” Baker said.

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