Ofo (American Indians Ready Reference)
Beginning in 1673, under pressure from the Iroquois, a Siouan tribe of eight villages moved in successive stages from the area of the upper Ohio River to land located on the Yazoo River in Mississippi. They were known as the Ofogoula (translated by some as “Dog People” and by others simply as “People”), Ofo (a contraction of Ofogoula), and Mosopelea. The first historical reference to the Ofo, in 1699, refers to a village of Ofogoulas among six river villages. In 1721, a mixed village of Ofogoulas and Curoas, consisting of approximately 250 persons, was reported.
In 1729, the Natchez Revolt against the French occurred; the Ofo refused to participate, moved south, and became allies of the French. In 1739, they joined the French in attacking the Chickasaw, and in 1764, they participated in a French attack on an English convoy on the Mississippi River. Many of the Ofo were killed. In 1784, a dozen or so were found with the Tunica Indians in a village on the Mississippi, eight miles north of Point Coupée. Following 1784, no mention is made of the Ofo in books. In 1908, the last surviving Ofo speaker was discovered. The woman, named Rosa Pierrette, had been taught the language by her grandmother, and all other remaining members of the Ofo tribe had died when she was young. She was interviewed, and she confirmed the name of the tribe and many of its cultural practices. She also provided a substantial amount of the Ofo language, enough to enable the...
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