The Payne-Butrick Papers, 2-volume set


The Payne-Butrick Papers, 2-volume set

Edited and annotated by William L. Anderson, Jane L. Brown, and Anne F. Rogers

Indians of the Southeast Series

928 pages


October 2010


$150.00 Add to Cart

About the Book

This landmark two-volume set is the richest and most important extant collection of information about traditional Cherokee culture. Because many of the Cherokees’ own records were lost during their forced removal to the west, the Payne-Butrick Papers are the most detailed written source about the Cherokee Nation during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.
In the 1830s John Howard Payne, a respected author, actor, and playwright, and Daniel S. Butrick, an American Board missionary, hastened to gather information on Cherokee life and history, fearing that the cultural knowledge would be lost forever. Butrick, who was conversant with the Cherokees’ culture and language after having spent decades among them, recorded what elderly Cherokees had to say about their lives. The collection also contains much of the Cherokee leaders’ correspondence, which had been given to Payne for safekeeping.
This amazing repository of information covers nearly all aspects of traditional Cherokee culture and history, including politics, myths, early and later religious beliefs, rituals, marriage customs, ball play, language, dances, and attitudes toward children. It will inform our understanding and appreciation of the history and enduring legacy of the Cherokees.

Author Bio

William L. Anderson is a professor emeritus at Western Carolina University. He is the coeditor of A Guide to Cherokee Documents in Foreign Archives and the editor of Cherokee Removal: Before and After and the Journal of Cherokee Studies. Jane L. Brown is an instructor of anthropology at Western Carolina University. Anne F. Rogers is a professor of anthropology at Western Carolina University and coeditor of Culture, Crisis, and Conflict: Cherokee British Relations, 1756–1765.


"Anderson, Brown, and Rogers . . . have done a remarkable job of compiling the Payne-Butrick papers, a compendium of lore about religion, kinship, government, and myriad other elements of Cherokee cultural history. . . . A must-have set for libraries, especially in the old Cherokee Southeast and Oklahoma."—C.R. Kasee, CHOICE

"The Payne-Butrick Papers will be used by scholars, and, more important, larger numbers of Cherokee people can refer to them as well. That this information can now be easily accessed in the Qualla Boundary, North Carolina, and in Tahlequah, Oklahoma, rather than just in Chicago is a wonderful thing, and Anderson, Brown, and Rogers are to be commended for taking on and successfully completing this important work."—Rose Stremlau, Journal of American History

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