4th Grade ESL Tennessee History
Part Three: Settlers

     What did King George III of England have to say
about white settlers coming to the United States?

King George III of England
1) When white settlers first came, there was NO United States. The settlers were still part of England's rule. King George III was their king.
2) An Englishman, Henry Timberlake, introduced three Cherokee chiefs to King George. He was impressed with them.
3) In 1763, he signed the Proclamation of 1763 and ordered that all white settlers stay out of 'Indian Country' -- everything west of the Appalachian mountains.
Find this area on a map.

This plaque near the Tennessee-Kentucky-Virginia border marks what was once the edge of the known world as far as Europeans are concerned
4)  King George had a problem. It was impossible for him to enforce the Proclamation of 1763. Settlers came anyway and lived where they wished.
5)  The first white settler in Tennessee was William Bean. In 1768 he built his cabin on the Watauga River. Soon after, James Robertson arrived. He would later become the founder of Nashville, Tennessee. He was followed by Valentine Sevier, the father of John Sevier, who would one day become the governor of Tennessee.

6) Shortly after, without the permission of King George, many other settlers arrived.
7) The settlers worked out a deal with the Cherokees. They met at Chota, an important Cherokee village, and gave the Cherokees about $1,000 worth of goods for the right to live on "all the country on the waters of the Watauga River" for 10 years.
8) The white settlers decided that they needed some form of government. In 1772, the leaders signed The Watauga Compact. It allowed for some form of self-government and established a court for those who broke the law.

Why was this important for the settlers?

Our New
Tennessee History Words


* Englishman: An Englishman is someone born in the country of England.
* proclamation: A proclamation is a public statement made by someone important.
* enforce: When you enforce something, you make sure it will happen.
* deal: A deal is an agreement.
* self-government: Self-government (or self governing) provides independence.

Fort Loudoun
  What happened at Fort Loudoun?

1) Native Americans had been living in present-day Tennessee for many years before white settlers arrived. As the settlers arrived (French hunters and traders from west and English settlers from the east) there were times of peace and times of war.
2) In the 1750s, the Cherokee and English settlers became friends. The Cherokees allowed the English to build Fort Loudoun in southeast Tennessee. But within a few years, they were enemies, and Fort Loudoun was beseiged by the Cherokees. The English soldiers and their families were killed.

There is a great Tennessee History for Kids video on Fort Loudoun. Click here to see it using Quicktime; here using Media Player, here to see it on youtube and here on teachertube.
  Why did trading make it hard for Cherokee ways to survive?

1) The settlers had many things that the Native Americans wanted.
2) The settlers would trade guns, metal tools, utensils, pots, pans, and cloth for the Native Americans' corn and animal skins.
3) A Cherokee could trade 3 deerskins for a hatchet and 20 deerskins for a pistol.
4) After a number of years, the Native Americans became dependent on the things that the settlers had.
5) The Cherokees began to change their ways. They began to wear clothing made by machine, use tools made from metal, and rely on the gun instead of the bow and arrow. Fewer younger Cherokees wanted to continue the tradition of making everything by hand. Why did the Cherokees change their ways?
6) More deer were killed. Cherokees had to travel further from home to find other deer to kill. Tribes began fighting over hunting ground rights.


  Tell me about the Transylvania Purchase and the great trip that followed.

1) Because settlers wanted more land, Richard Henderson called a meeting of Cherokee leaders in 1775. He offered to purchase an enormous piece of land (present-day middle Tennessee and southern Kentucky) in exchange for supplies.

2) Many of the Cherokee leaders, including Little Carpenter, said yes. But Little Carpenter's son Dragging Canoe said no. He said, "The land is bloody ground and it would be dark and difficult to settle it." He left the meeting along with many of his followers. Did Dragging Canoe agree with his father?
3) After the land buy, called the Transylvania Purchase, Richard Henderson sent Daniel Boone and some other men to start a settlement in present-day Kentucky. They took a route through a passage known as the Cumberland Gap.

A fort
4) A few years later, Henderson sent 200 people to a place on the Cumberland River called French Lick. It was called French Lick because of the many French traders who had already been there, and because of a salt lick along the river there.
5) James Robertson came first. He brought most of the men along with livestock. They traveled through the Cumberland Gap and started building a fort and planting crops at French Lick.

A flatboat
6) The women, children and the rest of the men came next by boat. They were led by James Donelson. Along the way, they were attacked many times by Dragging Canoe and his men. 33 settlers died along the way. The survivors made their way to French Lick, which was renamed Fort Nashborough.
7) John Donelson's 13-year-old daughter, Rachel, would later marry Andrew Jackson, the seventh president of the United States.

A hatchet
Our New Tennessee History Words

* beseiged -- When someone is beseiged, he is taken over by someone else.
* hatchet -- A hatchet is a small axe.
* pistol -- A pistol is a handgun.
* dependent -- When you need someone or something to survive, you are dependent on that someone or something.
* tradition -- Something that is a tradition has been done for many generations.
* exchange -- You exchange something when you give one thing and get another thing.
salt lick -- A place where salt can be found naturally (and where animals love to come lick the salt) is known as a salt lick.
* livestock -- Livestock refers to farm animals (such as pigs and cows), rather than wild animals (such as squirrels and bears).
* fort -- A fort is a protected place where soldiers and often their families lived.

A sketch of Dragging Canoe
   Who let the dogs out?

1) Dragging Canoe's followers, who were known as Chickamaugans, were not happy about the settlement of Fort Nashborough. King George III of England had forbidden it. And Fort Nashborough was in the midst of some of the best hunting ground around. Buffalo, deer and other wild animals and birds would come from many miles around to drink the water and lick the salt.
2) The Native Americans decided to attack Fort Nashborough in April 1781. The attack was called The Battle of the Bluffs.


This sign is in downtown Nashville.
3) The Chickamaugans fired at the fort and ran. Some of the settlers grabbed their guns and chased after them. After these men left the fort, more Native Americans came to attack the fort. Mostly women and children were left at the fort. One of the women decided to send their trained dogs to attack the Chickamaugans. The dogs confused the Native Americans, and Fort Nashborough was saved.

What is unusual about how Fort Nashborough was saved from the attacking Native Americans?

Was there any more trouble between the settlers and Native Americans?

1) Cherokee and Creek warriors ambushed many farms in present-day Middle Tennessee.
2) It was estimated that the early settlements lost a man, woman, or child to Native American attacks about every ten days.
3) In 1788, 40 settlers were floating down the Tennessee River near present-day Chattanooga. Dragging Canoe and his Chickamaugans killed 37 of them.
4) The Cherokee fought on the British side during the American Revolution.
5) After the American Revolution, the settlers wanted revenge.

Why did the settlers want revenge?

The Tennessee River near where there were once Chickamaugan villages
6) In 1794, about 1,500 armed settlers from Nashville went to attack Chickamaugan villages in present-day southeastern Tennessee. These attacks were called the Nickajack Expedition, and many Chickamaugan villages were completely destroyed.
7) The relationships between the settlers and the Cherokee became much better at this time. The Cherokees realized that they would need to adapt to white culture in order to survive.
How did the Cherokees adapt?

Our New Tennessee History Words
* forbidden -- If someone tells you that you aren't allowed to do something, they have forbidden it.
* warrior -- A warrior is a soldier.
* ambush -- An ambush is a surprise attack.
* revenge -- If you want to get someone back for something bad they have done to you, you want revenge.
* adapt -- You adapt when you change to fit in with what is around you.

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