Saturday, October 06, 2007

"Talking Leaves"

From the Sequoyah Birthplace Museum website:
They called him Sequoyah. And, this great Cherokee Indian gave his people an enduring gift. He gave them a writing system - so that the greatness of the Cherokee Nation will live forever.
Although Sequoyah was exposed to the concept of writing early in his life, he never learned the English alphabet. He began to toy with the idea of literacy for the Cherokee people. Unlike the white soldiers, he and the other Cherokees were not able to write letters home, read military orders, or record events as they occurred. After the war, he began in earnest to create a writing system for the Cherokees.
In 1821, after 12 years working on the new language, he and his daughter introduced his syllabary to the Cherokee people. Within a few months thousands of Cherokees became literate.
Sequoyah's white name? -- George Gist. Click here to access the museum website.

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