Language: Tutelo
Family: Southeastern Siouan
Stock: Siouan Proper
Phylum: Siouan
Macro-Culture: Eastern Woodlands
Speakers None
      The Monacan were a bellicose sedentary hunter/ farmer tribe. The eastern Siouans fissioned from the greater Siouan culture about 1,000 B. C. and crossed the Appalachians into Virginia displacing the previous inhabitants. The Monacan lived along the upper James River above the falls at Richmond. Conflicts with the Iroquois and Whites destroyed much of the tribe. Descendants, however, remain in their aboriginal territory.
Aboriginal Locations: Subdivisions (Villages)
VA    Massinacack, Mohemencho, Rassawek
Present Locations
VA   Monacan Tribe, Monroe
Year History
1607 Jamestown settlement; learned of by Capt. John Smith during exploration of James River
1608 Visited by Captain Newport
1650 Probable fission of Saponi
1670 Smallpox epidemic sometime after this year
1699 Population declining, Huguenots took possession of a village
1702 Some remained in area per Swiss traveler Michel though some had been driven away earlier by colonel Bornn and probably later united with Saponi or Tutelo
1722 Treaty of Albany, Iroquois stopped hostilities against Virginia tribes
1988 Tribe became a state registered corporation
1989 Tribe recognized by the Virginia General Assembly
Year Total VA Pop. Source
1600 600 Mooney estimate
1699 100   Swanton
1700 100 NAHDB calculation
1800 50 NAHDB calculation
1900 50 NAHDB calculation 
2000 1,300 NAHDB calculation 
2005 1,400   U of Virgiinia
Other speakers of the same language:
Manahoac, Moneton, Nahyssan, Occaneechi, Saponi, Tutelo
Monacan Sites:
Monanac Indian Homecoming Festival
Monacan Indian Living History Village
Monacan Indian Nation
Monacan Indian Nation History
Monacan Indian Nation Leaders Meet
Monacan Indians
Monacan Indians of Amherst County
Monacan Indian Tribe
Tutelo Language
Tutelo Language
Tutelo Language Revitalized
Tutelo Linguistic Lineage
Monacan Nation
Siouan Language Group:  Monacan Tribe
Virginia's Indians:  Monacans

Last updated 10/11/05  Copyright 2005 by Four Directions Press