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South Carolina – Indians, Native Americans – The Pee Dee


South Carolina SC Native Americans SC Indian Tribes SC Pee Dee Indians

Name, Language

  • Alternate spellings: Pedee, Peedee, Peadea, Pidees
  • Possible meanings: From pi'ri, Catawba for "something good" or pi'here, for "smart, expert, capable"
  • Language family: Siouan

Current Status

  • Active

  • The Pee Dee Indian Tribe of South Carolina obtained official state recognition on January 27, 2006.

  • The Pee Dee Indian Nation of Upper South Carolina obtained official state recognition in February 2005.

Contact Information

  • Pee Dee Indian Tribe of South Carolina
    3742 Pea Bridge Road
    McColl, SC 29570
    Telephone: 843-523-6790

    3814 Highway 57 North
    Little Rock, SC 29567
    Telephone: 843-586-9675
    Email: cbchie@aol.com

  • Marlboro, Chesterfield, Darlington County Pee Dee Indian Tribe
    4116 Redbud Road
    McColl, SC 29570
    Telephone: 843-479-8500
    Email: susanlabean@yahoo.com
    Website

SC Location, Territory

  • The Pee Dee River, about 435 miles long, rises as the Yadkin River in the Blue Ridge Mountains of northwestern North Carolina and flows northeast then southeast to Winyah Bay, South Carolina. It is called the Yadkin for about 200 miles until it is joined by the Uharie River west of Troy, North Carolina. As the Pee Dee, it continues for another 230 miles.

  • Traditional: Along the middle course of the Pee Dee River in Chesterfield and Marlboro counties

  • Today: The Pee Dee Indian Tribe of South Carolina is headquartered in the McColl, Marlboro County.

Related SC Names

Population Estimates

  • 1600: 600
  • 1808: 30

History

  • 1712 – Fought with the British in the Tuscarora War

  • 1715 – Map shows Pee Dee village located on the east bank of the Pee Dee River, near where the town of Cheraw is now. The Cheraw tribe lived to the north.

  • 1715-1716 – Fought with the British against other South Carolina tribes in the Yemassee War

  • 1717 – A Pee Dee Indian named Tom Rice negotiated a peace agreement between the British colonists and the neighboring Cheraw tribe.

  • 1744 – Tribe members killed several Catawba. In return the Catawba drove the Pee Dee from their lands into white settlements.

  • 1751 – At the Albany conferences the Iroqouis agree not to attack the Pee Dee and several other small South Carolina tribes whose members lived in white settlements.

  • 1752 – The Pee Dee began joining the Catawba, though some remained in white settlements as late as 1755.

  • 1808 – Last mention of the Pee Dee in a state document

Dwellings

  • Homes: Built circular homes made of tree bark along river banks.

  • Villages: Most villages probably contained a sweat lodge which was used for ritual purification, but no description of these exists.

Food

  • Farming: Corn, beans. Gathered many wild plants and nuts including acorns, chestnuts, strawberries, and plums.

  • Hunting: Deer and small game

  • Fishing: Freshwater fish

Beliefs and Practices

  • Little is known about the culture of the Pee Dee, but it is likely that their beliefs and basic practices were similar to other southeastern Siouan tribes.

Web Resources

Print Resources

  • Gorry, Connor "Pee Dee." Gale Encyclopedia of Native American Tribes. Vol. 1. Detroit: Gale Research, 1998, pp. 468-70.
  • Milling, Chapman J. Red Carolinians. Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 1969, pp. 220-30.
  • Swanton, John R. The Indian Tribes of North America. Washington, DC: Smithsonian Instition Press, 1984, p. 97.

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