The Cherokee Indians do not generally use one symbol to represent an idea or set of ideas, but they do rely on an alphabet. The symbols for the word family are ᏏᏓᏁᎸᎯ.
The Cherokee peoples did not have a written language prior to 1820. The Cherokee Sequoyah was the first of his people to realize that written language was the key to their survival in the modern world, as early as 1809. In 1815, Sequoyah and his wife Sally Waters began experimenting with syllabic symbols, and by 1820, the couple had created an alphabet that covered most of the known words. This new alphabet became known as the Sequoyah Syllabary for Cherokee language and led to the Cherokee alphabet that is used today.