Calhoun County

There are ancient mounds along areas of the Apalachicola River. Not much archaeological work has been done, and this area is worth further study.

Three miles southeast of Blountstown on the Apalachicola River is the Cayson Mound and Village. (Not open to the public.) This is a good example of the Fort Walton period Mound Culture, when the Florida Indians were at the most important height of their culture. (Dated 900-1500 AD)

Originally the Gregory House was on the opposite side of the Apalachicola River from where it is today at Torreya State Park. The former location of the house was also the former site of the Apalachee Indian village of Ocheesee.

The site of John Blount's village was near the modern location of Blountstown. Blount was referred to as an Apalachicola Indian, but was part of the Upper Creeks and a distinct minority of the Muscogulges.

John Blount, or Laufauka, was sympathetic to the Americans, and supported the Americans at the destruction of Negro Fort and the First Seminole War. He was one of the few chiefs that the United States could always rely on for support, and the U.S. paid him more money then most other Creeks and Seminoles that were sent west. At the negotiations for the Treaty of Moultrie Creek, the United States paid Blount's travel expenses and transported him to the talks. The treaty also had provisions for his group to stay on a small area of the Apalachicola River, although the defined reservation was very small.

The other Upper Creeks and Seminoles probably considered Blount a traitor because of his support of the United States. In the late 1820's Blount started to come under attack from Upper Creeks who raided Blount's village. Blount's family was threatened, and Blount himself was attacked.

The U.S. government decided that it had to remove John Blount's band and move them away for their own safety. Blount was promised land in Texas near where his uncle had settled. The government was generous on the expenses to move Blount, but many opposing Creeks and slave traders took much of the money. On his trip to the west, slave traders imprisoned Blount in New Orleans to get his money.

Another problem delayed Blount's departure from Florida. He wanted his son returned from the Choctaw Indian Academy in Kentucky. The school could not tell which student was Blount's son, and at first declared that he had died. Eventually Blount's son was located and returned to his family in time to be sent west.

Another Chief who also had a reservation along the Apalachicola River was Nea Mathla. In 1821 he helped the Americans find a suitable location for the new capital of Tallahassee. He told the visiting party not to tell the other local Indians that he had helped them, because it would ruin his reputation as a great warrior. Nea Mathla eventually became dissatisfied with the United State's Indian removal policy, so around 1836 he left his reservation to fight against the U.S. in the Creek War in Alabama, even at the age of 84. He had a reputation as the fiercest war leader in the Creek War.

Second Seminole War Forts: Fort Chipola on the river of the same name.

At Blountstown is the Pine Arbor Tribal Town Community Ground. This is a band made up of Florida, Georgia, and Alabama Creek families who stayed behind during removal. They have impressive genealogy records at their museum in Colquitt, Georgia, which even include original certificates of land grants. Although not recognized by the United States, they have impressive documentation and family traditions telling of an unbroken ceremonial tradition for centuries, and are also mentioned in Creek Nation files in Oklahoma. In the mid-20th century they almost died out, but during the past 30 years have made a comeback, with more relatives participating in community gatherings. I mention them here because they are the only group of unrecognized Florida bands that I have seen with documentation both in the files of the BIA and the Creek Nation. Pine Arbor Community Ground is not open to the public.


Other Travel Tips: