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“Vicious, Murdering Savages”

“Vicious, Murdering Savages”
March 22
11:07 2019

Governor Asa Hutchinson

A Democratic bill to honor tribes on the Arkansas state flag failed Wednesday.

It was the latest salvo in the War Between the State Lawmakers.

An effort to remove a symbol from the flag that honors the Confederate States of America failed on a party-line vote February 27.

The CSA symbol was added to the state’s flag in the 1920s.

Undeterred Democrat lawmaker Charles Blake proposed new legislation to recognize the three tribes that called Arkansas home before they were forcibly relocated to Indian Territory (now Oklahoma).

The tribes are the Quapaw, Osage, and Caddo.

Robert Freeman, a historian for the Sons of Confederate Veterans, was hotly opposed to the idea.

“Do not lose sight of the nature of the Indian tribes to be commemorated,” Freeman said. “They were vicious, murdering savages.”

The tribes – especially the Caddo – murdered and scalped early settlers to Arkansas, including men, women, and children, Freeman claimed.

At an earlier hearing on the subject a Republican lawmaker – identified by a local TV station as Rep. Jack Ladyman – was overheard asking another colleague why they would want to honor tribes “after they fought against us.”

Although Republicans in the Arkansas House voted down the measure, not all members of the GOP opposed Blake’s bill.

Quapaw Nation Chairman John Berrey thanked Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson for his endorsement of the failed legislation.

The word “Arkansas” is a from the Quapaw language, meaning “land of the downriver people.”

 

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