HomeAbout UKBHistory


The United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians has a rich and vibrant history. In the face of adversity, the Band has continued to strive and prosper. The UKB Department of Language, History, and Culture was established in 2005 in an effort to perpetuate the history that binds the Keetoowah Cherokee People.

Keetoowah History Essay

"Back in Georgia from whence the Cherokees originally migrated to the Indian Territory in 1838 and 1839, the old Keetoowah group was dying out as early as 1835," (Tulsa Tribune, Dec. 28, 1928) stated John L. Springston. Springston had served as a clerk and court reporter in the Saline District before Oklahoma statehood and was a Keetoowah.

This narrative will help the reader understand the Keetoowahs before 1835, as well as after, explaining why the disappearance from Georgia leading to today's location in northeastern Oklahoma. The spellings "Keetoowah" and "Kituwah" will be used interchangeably.

In the early 1900's, anthropologists noted that on ceremonial occasions, Cherokees frequently speak of themselves as 'Kituhwagi," (James Mooney, Myths of the Cherokees, 19th Annual Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology, Washington Government Printing Office, 1900, pg. 15) but the origin goes back to the beginning of time. The fact that the name Kituwah has always had a special significance to the Cherokee full-bloods has been ignored by many, and it is often looked at as a recent name given to a particular society, and later adopted by a tribe. This is not true; the name Kituwah being the true name of the Cherokee people, a name given directly from the Creator.


Keetoowah History Activities - A book for children to learn about Keetoowah Cherokee History and Culture

In 2006, the UKB released an activity booklet for children aimed at teaching them about the history and culture of the Keetoowah Cherokee People. This booklet is free and can be downloaded here.

United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians in Oklahoma.