Cherokee Thanksgiving

Cherokee: I want to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!

Ulihelisdi ᎤᎵᎮᎵᏍᏗ they are happy/thankful

Gatsv wigati? ᎦᏨ ᏫᎦᏘ Where are you going?

Menu about 1950

Holiday cheers

My father, Charles G. Suddeth worked at Gladwin Tool & Die, Southgate Michigan in the 60s. For Thanksgiving, employees got a free turkey. One year, Dad took a turkey out of “Joe’s” box and put in a frozen Cornish game hen weighing maybe 1 pound. Joe saw the Cornish game hen and used language that had sailors scrambling for dictionaries. (Dad claimed it wasn’t him, but he enjoyed it too much. Yes, the man got his turkey)

Sacred beings

North American Dragons

Great Serpent Mound is 3 feet high, 1348 feet long in Peebles, Ohio, Recent evidence points to an origin 2,000 years ago, Adena culture. Some believe it is about 1000 years old, part of the Fort Ancient culture (Ofo tribe, possibly Shawnee). It is in the shape of a serpent swallowing an egg or the earth. The serpent’s mouth faces west, some believe it is swallowing the earth, causing night.

Magic serpent/dragons are common in North American Indian culture

Uktena – Cherokee

Konsánonwi – Yuchi

Quetzal-coatl – Aztec

Kulcan – Maya

Psi-kinepikwa maneto – Shawnee (horned snake spirit)

[these names all have a K sound and an N or L]

Eating good

Thanksgiving Cherokee style!

Wishi ᏫᏏ AKA Miatake or Hen of the Woods is a mushroom growing at the base of oaks. It is said to have meaty/nutty flavor and is harvested around November 1.

Cut into strips and boil for at least 15 minutes. Drain.

Skillet fry with salt/pepper.

Deep fat fry—bread with white flour/salt/pepper.

Fry until brown. [Unless you are experienced, beware, eating the wrong mushroom can be fatal]

Long ago

Now and then

Leota, Scott County, Indiana, my grandfather, Lawrence Suddeth was born there in 1883, moved away 1888, but this store was surely familiar to him. The first photo is about 1902 and the other is recent. The old store looks taller, likely a façade, false front to make it appear 2-stories. Store likely dates from Civil War—from about 1860 to 1880 was a bustling town—school, canning plant, post office. Now it is a few homes and churches.

Lazy Sundown

Ohio River looking downriver, a few miles upriver from Louisville. Indiana right, on the left downtown Louisville visible. Eric Suddeth photo November 7, 2022.


Tuesday November 8 is the Beaver Full Moon. When the beaver hunker down in their dens and prepare for winter.

Cherokees call it Trading Moon Nudadaequa ᏄᏓᎠᏓᎡᏆ. When trading between villages and tribes occurred. Friendship Festival Adohuna ᎠᏙᎱᎾ.

Clang clang

Louisville streetcar (trolley) system had its last day on Derby Day 1948. It also ran a few cars to Indiana. Does anyone have knowledge of the Indiana extensions?

Old Home Place

Leota is in Scott County, Indiana, between Vienna and Salem. From 1830 to 1888, my family owned a farm here. My grandfather, Lawrence Morticle Suddeth, was born here but couldn’t find the farm years later with my father. If anyone knows the location, I would love to know. July 1863, Moran’s Raider passed through here, stealing horses and forcing local folks to cook for them.


When your map app says turn, don’t take them too literally: this driver apparently intended to make a left turn onto Lagrange Road (the emergency vehicles in the background are on this road) but missed and got the railroad tracks. A gas station parking lot on Whipps Mill Road (where he turned from) is the visible asphalt. I can understand not seeing the road in the dark, but the driver kept going as if asleep or too much partying. This is from May 15, I declare them driver of the year. Lyndon, Kentucky, about 10 miles east of Louisville.

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