What Are Some Facts About Yamasee Culture?


Quick Answer

The Yamasee, Yemassee or Yamassee were a Native American confederation living in coastal Georgia and parts of Florida. The Yamasee confederation included several different ethnic groups, including the Apalachee, Guale and Coweta. The Yamasee spoke a language thought to be related to Muskogee, and their name is thought to also be from Muskogee and mean "tame" or "quiet."

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Full Answer

The only record of Yamasee language that remains is from missionary Domingo Báez, but most of the evidence linking the language to other Native American languages, such as Muskogee, is unsupported. The Yamasee typically lived in log huts with thatched roofs. A round building in the center of a dwelling served as a community center.

The Yamasee did some farming, as well as fishing of native species and hunting deer and bear. They used mounds as burial sites. The Yamasee consider children to be part of the mother's clan, which is matriarchal and passed down from mother to daughter and so on. A man marrying a Yamasee woman went to live with the woman's family. Male children stayed with their mother until they came of age.

Some Yamasee clans include Panther, Deer, Wind, Toad and Otter. Clan members did not marry among themselves, and when the last member of a clan died, it was considered extinct.

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