Skip to main content
Select Source:

Caddo

CADDO

CADDO. The Caddo cultural pattern developed among groups occupying conjoining parts of Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas from a.d. 700 to 1000. These groups practiced agriculture, hunting, and trading and lived in dispersed family farmsteads associated with regional temple mound centers. Their elite leadership institutions and an emblematic material culture distinguished these groups. Caddos were first contacted by members of Hernando de Soto's expedition in 1542, when their population may have included as many as 200,000 people. Sub-sequent accounts portray a well-organized society, one that traced ancestry through the mother's line, that filled leadership positions by male inheritance, that had a calendar of ceremonies associated with important social and economic activities, and that had widely extending alliances. Access to European goods stimulated production of commodities for colonial markets, and Caddo leaders played important roles in colonial diplomacy. By the nineteenth century, European diseases had reduced the Caddo population to about 500 individuals, and families had been removed to reservations in Texas and Oklahoma. In this region, the Caddo preserved key social, political, and religious institutions, despite their diminishing circumstances. In 2002, about 4,000 people represented the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma, where at a tribal complex near Binger, a variety of health, education, economic development, social service, and cultural programs were maintained.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Carter, Cecile Elkins. Caddo Indians: Where We Come From. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1995.

LaVere, David. Caddo Chiefdoms: Caddo Economics and Politics, 800–1835. Lincoln: University of Nebraska, 1998.

Newkumet, Vynola B., and Howard L. Meredith. Hasinai: A Traditional History of the Caddo Confederacy. College Station: Texas A&M University Press, 1988.

Perttula, Timothy K. The Caddo Nation: Archaeological and Ethno-historic Perspectives. Austin: University of Texas Press, 1992.

Smith, F. T. The Caddo Indians: Tribes at the Convergence of Empires, 1542–1854. College Station: Texas A&M University Press, 1995.

———. The Caddos, the Wichitas, and the United States, 1846– 1901. College Station: Texas A&M University Press, 1996.

GeorgeSaboIII

See alsoTribes: Southeastern, Southwestern .

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Caddo." Dictionary of American History. . Encyclopedia.com. 19 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Caddo." Dictionary of American History. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 19, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/history/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/caddo

"Caddo." Dictionary of American History. . Retrieved August 19, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/history/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/caddo

Caddo

Caddo

ETHNONYMS: Ceni, Caddoquis, Teja

"Caddo" is the name used for a number of related and perhaps affiliated groups who lived in the lower Red River Valley and surrounding sections of what are now Louisiana, eastern Texas, and southern Arkansas. The number of Caddo subgroups is unknown and may have ranged from six to more than a dozen, including the Adai, Natchitoches, Kadohadacho, Hasinai, Hainai, and Eyeish. The name "Caddo" is an Anglicization of the French corruption of "Kadohadacho," the name of one of the subgroups. Each subgroup spoke a dialect of the Caddo language; only Kadohadacho and Hasinai are spoken today. The Caddo now live mainly on allotted land in Caddo County, Oklahoma, where they are affiliated with the Wichita and Delaware and are largely assimilated into European-American society. In 1984 there were about three thousand Caddo.

First contact was evidently with Hernando de Soto's Expedition of 1540. Subsequent contacts with the Spanish and French were generally peaceful, though the Caddo were drawn into the wars between the French and Spanish and depopulated by disease. Following the Louisiana Purchase, the Caddo ceded their land to the federal government and moved first to Texas and then, in 1859, to their present locale in what is now Oklahoma.

The Caddo lived in settled villages of large earthlodges and grass-covered lodges similar to those of the Wichita. They subsisted through a combination of horticulture, hunting, and gathering. Maize and beans were the major crops and deer and bison the primary game animals. The Caddo were well known for their highly developed manufactures including baskets, mats, cloth, and pottery. Their religion centered on a supreme deity and lesser deities. The ceremonial cycle closely followed the annual subsistence cycle. Leadership rested with hereditary chiefs and subchiefs. The tribe is governed today by elected tribal officers and a council, which operates independently of the similar bodies that govern the Delaware and Wichita.

Bibliography

Gregory, H. F. (1986). The Southern Caddo: An Anthology. New York: Garland Publishing.

Pertulla, Timothy K. (1980). "The Caddo Indians of Louisi-ana: A Review." Louisiana Archaeology 7:116-121.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Caddo." Encyclopedia of World Cultures. . Encyclopedia.com. 19 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Caddo." Encyclopedia of World Cultures. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 19, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/caddo-0

"Caddo." Encyclopedia of World Cultures. . Retrieved August 19, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/caddo-0

Caddo

Caddo (kăd´ō), Native North Americans whose language belongs to the Caddoan branch of the Hokan-Siouan linguistic stock (see Native American languages). These people gave their name not only to the linguistic branch but also to the Caddo confederacy, a loose federation of tribes that in prehistoric times occupied lands from the Red River valley in Louisiana to the Brazos River valley in Texas and N into Arkansas and Kansas. Members, besides the Caddo, included the Arikara, the Pawnee, the Wichita, and others. The culture of these loosely knit peoples was similar. Generally they were sedentary, living in villages of conical huts, although they did raise horses. The culture of the Caddo proper was marked by a clearly defined system of social stratification and by a religion that closely regulated daily life. Some now reside on tribal land in Oklahoma. In 1990 there were 3,000 Caddo in the United States.

See J. T. Hughes, Prehistory of the Caddoan-Speaking Tribes (1968).

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Caddo." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 19 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Caddo." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 19, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/caddo

"Caddo." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved August 19, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/caddo