The Sovereign Nation
of the Shawnee Tribe (Oklahoma), recognized by the United States under the
Shawnee Tribe Status Act of 2000. It has authorized to issue their first
historical coin in the same year on 30th July featuring Chief Tecumseh (50000 pieces in
BU and 20000 pieces in Proof). The coat of arms on the reverse contains 12
stars, representing the original 12 tribes of the Shawnee Indian Nation. The
four tribes that survived were known to the white settlers as Mequachake,
Chillicothe, Liskapoke and the Piqua. "The coins are not legal
tender," Gary Pitcher, the tribe’s director of economic development,
told Indian Country. A value, in this case one dollar, was put on the coins
"because they would be more collectable." Certain media reports
have described the coins as "legal tender on Shawnee lands," which
they are not. Instead, the silver dollar is meant as a commemorative issue,
honoring the Shawnees’ legal separation, in 2000, from the Cherokee Nation
after 135 years of union.
The Shawnee people
originally dwelt in what is now Ohio. As their chief, Tecumseh sought to
resist European encroachment into the old Northwest Territories by uniting
the region’s Indian nations and refusing to sell land held in common by
the tribes to individual white settlers.
"No tribe has
the right to sell, even to each other, much less to strangers,"
Tecumseh said. "Sell a country! Why not sell the air, the great sea, as
well as the earth? Didn’t the Great Spirit make them all for the use of
his children? We gave them forest-clad mountains and valleys full of game,
and in return what did they give our warriors and our women? Rum, trinkets
and a grave."
The seal of the
Shawnee Tribe is dated Nov. 7, 1811. Tecumseh fought as
a brigadier general on the side of the British during the War of 1812 and
was killed in combat at the Battle of the Thames in Chatham, Ontario in
In 2003 a second new silver design of Shawnee tribe Dollar featuring
Lewis, Clark & Drouillard was introduced (50000
pieces in BU and 20000 pieces in Proof, authenticity signature on the
certificate is done by Ron Sparkman, tribal chairman). This coin Commemorates George Drouillard, the son of a French Canadian
father and Shawnee Indian mother, who served as interpreter and hunter for
the historic Lewis and Clark Expedition. He was an excellent hunter and had
a good knowledge of Indian sign language and customs. His skills and
advice more than once save the expedition from potential
disaster. Pictured on the obverse of the coin are Lewis, Clark
and Drouillard holding rifles. The reverse features the tribal arms.
In 1804-1806, President Thomas Jefferson commissioned Meriwether Lewis and
William Clark to lead an expedition on an epic journey to explore the
headwaters of the Missouri River and find an overland route to the Pacific
Ocean by the way Columbia River. The "Corps of Discovery" departed
Camp DuBois near Wood River, Illinois on May 14, 1804, and proceeded up the
Missouri River. The party reached the Knife River Indian Villages, near
present day Washburn, North Dakota, where they built Fort Mandan. There they
also recruited as interpreters, the Frenchman Toussaint Charbonneau and his
wife, Sacagawea. The Corps of Discovery reached the Pacific Ocean in
November 1805 and returned home the next year in 1806.
These silver and
gold coins of Shawnee Tribe can be purchased directly from "Panada
America" at http://www.pandaamerica.com/subcategory.asp?subcat=163&categ=77&grp=1.
information on Shawnee Tribe can be viewed at http://www.pandaamerica.com/NEWS_shawnee_tacumseh_05_29_2002.ASP