History & Culture

The Life and Times of the Chickasaw People

Our ancestors and the events that have shaped our past tell us who we are and where we are going. The challenges and triumphs of our shared history continue to forge who we are today as our proud Chickasaw culture continues to flourish. Begin your journey here.

Woodland Era

1000 BC-900 AD

Our Chickasaw ancestors resided in the valleys of the Mississippi, Tennessee and Tombigbee River. Long-distance exchange peaked during the Middle Woodland, with movement of exotic trade goods such as chert blades, native copper, galena, quartz crystal, marine shell, decorated pottery and other valued items.

Clay pottery also came into their lives during this time, probably via the Caribbean; food storage began.

At the end of this era, the spear was replaced by the bow and arrow. Smaller animals were hunted. Diet began to change. Corn, which traces its roots back to Mexico, arrived in the Southeast.