The name Canada is derived from the Iroquoian word kanata, which means village. Canada is located in the northern portion of the continent of North America, extending, in general, from the 49th parallel northward to the islands of the Arctic Ocean. Its eastern and western boundaries are the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans respectively. Its land area totals 3, square miles 9, square kilometers.
Definition[ edit ] The ancestry and identity of Melungeons has been a highly controversial subject. They might accurately be described as a loose collection of families of diverse origins who migrated, settled near each other, and intermarried, mostly in Hancock and Hawkins counties in Tennesseenearby areas of Kentuckyand in Lee County, Virginia.
They were largely endogamousmarrying primarily within their community until about Melungeons have been defined as having multiracial ancestry. They did not exhibit characteristics that could be classified as those of a single racial phenotype. Most modern-day descendants of Appalachian families traditionally regarded as Melungeon are generally European American in appearance, often though not always with dark hair and eyes, and a swarthy or olive complexion.
During the nineteenth century, free people of color sometimes identified as Portuguese or Native American in order to avoid being classified as black in the segregated slave societies.
They have tended to "marry white" since before the twentieth century. Contemporary authors identify differing lists of surnames to be included as families associated with Melungeons. The English surname Gibson and Irish surname Collins appear frequently; genealogist Pat Elder calls them "core" surnames.
From about the midth to the late 20th centuries, it referred exclusively to one tri-racial isolate group, the descendants of the multiracial Collins, Gibson, and several other related families at Newman's Ridge, Vardy Valley, and other settlements in and around Hancock and Hawkins counties, Tennessee.
This meant the children of African slave mothers were born into slavery. But it also meant the children of free white or mulatto women, even if fathered by enslaved African men, were born free. The free descendants of such unions formed many of the oldest free families of color.
Early colonial Virginia was very much a "melting pot" of peoples, and some of these early multiracial families were ancestors of the later Melungeons. Each family line has to be traced separately.
Over the generations, most individuals of the group called Melungeon were persons of mixed European and African descent, whose ancestors had been free in colonial Virginia.
These conclusions have been largely upheld in subsequent scholarly and genealogical studies.
Inthe U. Inthe genealogist Roberta Estes and her fellow researchers reported that the Melungeon lines likely originated in the unions of black and white indentured servants living in Virginia in the mids before slavery became widespread. They migrated together from western Virginia through the Piedmont frontier of North Carolinabefore settling primarily in the mountains of East Tennessee.
For instance, the Collins, Gibson, and Ridley Riddle families owned land adjacent to one another in Orange County, North Carolinawhere they and the Bunch family were listed in as "free Molatas mulattoes ", subject to taxation on tithes. By settling in frontier areas, free people of color found more amenable living conditions and could escape some of the racial strictures of the Virginia and North Carolina Tidewater plantation areas.
Forbes has discussed laws in South Carolina related to racial classification: InSouth Carolina decided who should be an "Indian" for tax purposes since American [Indian] slaves were taxed at a lesser rate than African slaves. He wrote, My judgment to be discussed later is that a mustee was primarily part-African and American [Indian] and that a mulatto was usually part-European and American [Indian].
The act is also significant because it asserts that part-American [Indians] with or without [emphasis added] African ancestry could be counted as Negroes, thus having an implication for all later slave censuses. From there they migrated south in the Appalachian Range to Wilkes County, North Carolinawhere some are listed as "white" on the census.
They resided in a part that became Ashe Countywhere they are designated as "other free" in They appear to have been treated as social equals of the white members.
The earliest documented use of the term "Melungeon" is found in the minutes of this church see Etymology below. While there are historical references to the documents, the evidence has come from transcribed copies. The earliest known Melungeon in what is now northeast Tennessee was Millington Collins, who executed a deed in Hawkins County in On the censuses of Hawkins and neighboring Grainger County, Tennesseethe Collins and Gibson families are listed as "free-colored".
Melungeons were residents of the part of Hawkins that in was organized as Hancock County. During the 18th and early 19th centuries, census enumerators classified them as "mulatto", "other free", or as "free persons of color". Sometimes they were listed as "white", sometimes as "black" or "negro", but almost never as "Indian".
One family described as "Indian" was the Ridley Riddle family, noted as such on a Pittsylvania County, Virginiatax list.
At the time, as in Virginia, if a free person was mostly white one-eighth or less blackhe was considered legally white and a citizen of the state:Native American Culture Essay Examples.
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