Cherokee Newspapers, 1828–1906 by Cullen Joe Holland
Tribal Voice of a People in Transition

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Indian journalism began at New Echota, Georgia, with the publication of the first issue of the Cherokee Phoenix on February 21, 1828. Amid the dynamic backdrop of increasing U.S. efforts to force American Indian tribes west, the Phoenix became the voice of the Cherokee people. Its editor, Elias Boudinot, insisted that the paper meet the highest standards and saw its purpose as a defender of Indian rights. To allow for the broadest possible readership, the Cherokee Phoenix was printed in both Cherokee and English. Facing the challenges of running a frontier newspaper, Boudinot consistently produced a quality publication.

In Cherokee Newspapers, 1828–1906, Cullen Joe Holland skillfully covers the growth of the Phoenix, explains how the Cherokee font was acquired, and discusses problems the paper faced internally until its confiscation by the Georgia militia in 1834. He then picks up the story ten years later, after the Cherokees have lost their battle to remain in the east and have endured the forced migration to the newly established Cherokee Nation in the west. There, on September 26, 1844, the newspaper was reborn as the Cherokee Advocate. Like the Phoenix, it was again a voice for the Cherokee people. The Advocate was printed from 1844 to 1853 and from 1870 until it closed in 1906.

This remarkable history of Indian journalism includes photographs of many of the editors and printers of the Cherokee Phoenix and the Cherokee Advocate. Together these two groundbreaking newspapers covered most of the issues the Cherokees faced during the nineteenth century—including removal, reconstruction, allotment, and Oklahoma statehood.

About Cullen Joe Holland

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Published November 24, 2014 by Cherokee National Press. 578 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, Education & Reference.