The Natchez War

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The Natchez War

The Natchez are Native American people who originally lived in the Natchez Bluffs area near the present-day city of Natchez, Mississippi. Archaeological evidence states that the Natchez people lived in the Natchez Bluffs region since as long ago as 700 A.D. The Natchez Indians were among the last American Indian groups to inhabit the area now known as southwestern Mississippi. Only after several disputes with the French were the Natchez dispersed.

The French began exploring the lower Mississippi River in the late 17th century. In 1682 Rene Robert Cavelier, and Sieur de La Salle led an expedition down the Mississippi River. The Natchez warriors met those men with a hostile force and forced them away. Not long after this meeting, Sieur de Iberville visited the Natchez and opened negotiations with the Natchez chief, “Great Son.” Soon the French began settling among the Natchez. Sieur de Iberville and his brother Sieur de Bienville both played a major role in the negotiations between the French and Natchez. After several altercations, a fort was built named Fort Rosalie. This caused for more settlers to move into the colony.

In November of 1729 the French commander Sieur de Chepart ordered the Natchez to vacate the village of White Apple so that he could use the land for a new tobacco plantation. The Natchez were not pleased with this decision. Unwilling to cooperate, the Natchez Indians decided to send word of revolt to other tribes such as the Choctaw, Chickasaw, and even to the African slaves of nearby French plantations. On November 28, 1729, the Natchez began their attack. At the end of the day the entire French colony at Natchez was wiped out, including Fort Rosalie. Many men were killed and women, children and slaves were taken captive.

Only a few months later, French men and Choctaw allies attacked the Natchez forts. War continued until 1731 when the French captured another Natchez fort. Several Natchez warriors escaped and...
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