Bookshelf

This is a collection of scanned sources on Muskogee.

Some of the first words recorded in Muskogee were written by Germans in the area of Savannah, Georgia. Philip Georg Friedrich von Reck kept a notebook in 1736 in which he drew illustrations of animals, plants, and daily life, often with labels in Muskogee and Yuchi. In the illustration below, he recorded the words “Wajo” (now spelled wvyo ‘flying squirrel’), Fu-Zag-ta (fus-cahtv ‘cardinal’), and Jo-wei-ka (yowhihkv ‘bluebird’).

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From Indian Territory

The first book in Muskogee was John Fleming’s 1834 Mʊskoki Imʊnaitsʊ / Muskokee (Creek) Assistant. It was followed in 1835 by a child’s book (Istutsi in naktsokʊ) and by a sermon and hymns:

  • Fleming, John. 1834. Mʊskoki imʊnaitsʊ. Muskokee (Creek) Assistant. Boston: Crocker & Brewster. PDF
  • Fleming, John. 1835. Istutsi in naktsokʊ. Union [Mission], Indian Territory: John F. Wheeler. [This scanned version is courtesy the Watkinson Library, Trinity College.] PDF
  • Fleming, John. 1835. A Short Sermon: Also Hymns, in the Muskokee or Creek Language. Boston: Crocker & Brewster. PDF

Fleming’s spelling was influenced by the work of John Pickering (1820). It used upsilon (ʊ) for the “uh” sound (later simplified to “v”).

At almost the same time, the Baptist missionaries Johnston Lykins and John Davis published a translation of the Book of John:

They introduced the use of the letter “c” for the “ch” sound, used “y” for the “ay” sound (later spelled with “i”), and introduced “r” for the “thl” sound.

R. M. Loughridge and David Winslett published a popular hymnal in 1851. It subsequently went through several editions and is often reprinted. The same authors also published a catechism:

Loughridge and Winslett introduced small changes to the alphabet to make words shorter and easier to print. Where Fleming had used “ʊ” for the “uh” sound, they used “v”. They followed Lykins and Davis in using “c” for the “ch” sound and “r” for the “thl” sound. They used “i” for the “ay” sound. As they note, this alphabet “was adopted by many Interpreters and Chiefs, at the Old Agency, in 1853, as the Alphabet of the Language.”

H. F. Buckner and G. Herrod published a grammar, a song book, and a translation of the Gospel of John in 1860. Their alphabet was unusual and was not adopted by others.

  • Buckner, H. F., and G. Herrod. 1860. A Grammar of the Maskωke, or Creek Language, to Which Are Prefixed Lessons in Spelling, Reading, and Defining. Marion, Ala.: Domestic and Indian Mission Board of the Southern Baptists Convention. [This scanned version is courtesy of Special Collections Research Center, Margaret I. King Library, University of Kentucky Libraries.] PDF
  • Buckner, H. F., and G. Herrod. 1860. Mäskōke hymns. Original, collected, and revised. Marion, Ala.: Domestic and Indian Mission Board of the Southern Baptists Convention. [Sabin Americana 1500-1926]
  • Buckner, H. F., and G. Herrod. 1860. The Gospel according to John. Opunvkv hera Chanichuyvten. Marion, Ala.: Domestic and Indian Mission Board of the Southern Baptists Convention.

William S. Robertson began missionary work in 1849. He wrote two primers with David Winslett. The two also helped translate a popular Gospel tract by Rev. Newman Hall:

Ann Eliza Worcester Robertson (daughter of missionary Samuel Worcester and wife of William S. Robertson) began missionary work among the Muskogee in 1850. She oversaw the editing and translation in Muskogee of much of the New Testament. Around 1871 she published a translation of Rev. J.B. Waterbury’s “I will go to Jesus”:

In 1880 she published a new book of songs:

In 1899 she published a translation of the Methodist doctrines and discipline:

  • Methodist Episcopal Church, South. The doctrines and discipline of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South = Wvhvlv Merotest Epeskopvl Mekusvpkv-Cuko em mvhakv momen seemfvyatkv ocakat 1898 / edited by John J. Tigert ; A.E.W. Robertson, translator. Nashville, Tenn. : Pub. House of the M.E. Church, South, 1899. [https://library.si.edu/digital-library/book/doctrinesdiscip00meth]

She also transcribed a folktale told by Taylor Postoak:

  • Postoak, Taylor. The Corn Fable / Vce Nak Onvkuce. Transcribed and translated by A. E. W. Robertson. Edited by Jack B. Martin. Illustrations by Jack B. Martin. PDF

In 1885, R. M. Loughridge wrote two essays on baptism and infant baptism. These were translated by David Winslett and J. H. Land and bound together:

  • Loughridge, R. M. 1885. Cesvs Klist estomen paptisetv mvhayet emeu vfastvte / The mode of baptism taught and practiced by Jesus Christ. Hopuetakuce Paptisetv / Infant Baptism.Translated by David W. Winslett and J. H. Land. Muskogee, I.T.: Indian Journal Steam Job Office. PDF [This version from Melanie Frye, courtesy the Newberry Library]

In 1888 Albert S. Gatschet published a migration legend in Muskogee, Hitchiti, and English. He tried to write the story phonetically instead of in the usual way:

  • Gatschet, Albert S. 1888. A Migration Legend of the Creek Indians, Texts and Glossaries in Creek and Hitchiti, with a Linguistic, Historic, and Ethnographic Introduction and Commentary. Volume 2. St. Louis: Printed for the author. [https://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/009658469]

Also in 1888, a Seminole named Henry Martin translated an article about baptism:

  • Paptisetv ohfatcv. / Translated by Henry Martin. Philadelphia, Pa. : American Baptist Publication Society, [1888?]. Scan from Melanie Frye courtesy the Newberry Library. [Paptisetv_Ohfatcv]

For almost a hundred years, there was only one Muskogee dictionary, first published in 1890:

During the nineteenth century, community members worked with missionaries to translate the New Testament and several books of the Old Testament:

A large number of newspaper articles were published in Muskogee in the nineteenth century. These are difficult to obtain now, but a small collection appears below. The following items appeared in the Indian Journal:

  • [Winslett, D.] “Wewvhome svkerkuce.” Indian Journal, March 6, 1878. PDF typescript
  • Anonymous. “The Cheyenne and Arapahoe Prisoners. Siyenvlke momet Elapvhovlke Svlvfkvlke.” Indian Journal March 27, 1878, vol. 2, no. 30. PDF typescript
  • Land, Henry, Tr. “Kometv momet Enhopoyetv.” Indian Journal, April 3, 1878. PDF typescript
  • Sullivan, N. B. “Sepv Ekvnv em Mekko-Hokte Salom- / nn Mekko en Cukopericvte.” Indian Journal, June 5, 1878. PDF typescript
  • [Robertson, A. E. W.] “Perehem Hococumpv.” [Star of Bethlehem.] Indian Journal, Aug. 14, 1878. PDF typescript
  • E. Q. “Am I a Soldier of the Cross.” Indian Journal, Sept. 18, 1878, vol. 3 no. 3. PDF typescript
  • R[obertson], A. E. W. “I want to be like Jesus.” [Cesvs Omaret Komis.] Indian Journal, Feb. 12, 1880. PDF typescript
  • P[orter], J[ohn] S., Jr. [Letter from Okmulgee.] Indian Journal, April 15, 1880. PDF typescript
  • G[rayson], G[eorge] W[ashington]. 1880. “Maskoke Vrahkv.” Indian Journal, April 22, 1880. PDF typescript
  • P[erryman], L[egus] C. 1881. “Coka Mahaya.” Indian Journal, August 4, 1881. PDF typescript

From about 1872 to 1875, Tullahassee Boarding School published a monthly newsletter:

Stores in the Muscogee (Creek) Nation occasionally printed advertisements in Muskogee. Melanie Frye found the following at the Newberry Library:

  • Turner, C.W. ca. 1880. Pohattetv! Cokv svhkopvnkvn wikoks, eshayeckvn vtvrticvks. Okmulgee, I.T.: Levison & Blythe Stationery Co. PDF
  • Turner, C.W. ca. 1880. Ehomvn hoeriye monks mon cehohsvkates. Okmulgee, I.T.: Levison & Blythe Stationery Co. PDF

Government laws and policies were usually published in Muskogee and English during the nineteenth century. A few of these appear below:

Twentieth century

In 1905 a number of hymns collected by J. H. Land were published as a hymnal. A transcription of the copy at the University of Oklahoma’s Western History Collections appears below:

  • Land, J. H. 1905. Muskogee Hymns. A rare hymn book transcribed by Debra Baker, Brandon Lyle, and Roberta Thomas. PDF typescript

In the 1970s Susannah Factor and others at the Seminole Bilingual Education Project in Ada, Oklahoma produced a number of children’s books for use in schools. Some of these are presented below:

  • Davis, Lorene, Susannah Factor, and Mary Haas. Nak-cokv Yvlunkv Enhake (Seminole Phonics I). Ada: Seminole Bilingual Education Project. PDF in 5 parts: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5
  • Davis, Lorene, and Susannah Factor. 1977. Semenole Eskerretv Cokv Semvhayetv Svhokkolat (Seminole Phonics II). Illustrations by Quannah Chuleewah. Ada: Seminole Bilingual Education Project. PDF in 5 parts: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5
  • Factor, Susannah. 1979. Ohhonvyetv Cokv Svtutcenat. Third Grade Reading Book. Illustrations by Chester Scott. Ada: Creek-Seminole Bilingual Education Project. 1 | 2
  • Factor, Susannah. 1978. Loca, Eco Tentokorkvtes. Terrapin Race. Ada: Seminole Bilingual Education Project. PDF
  • Harjo, Edmond A. 1978. Pu-nvt-tv E-ten-hes-se (Animal Friends). Illustrated by Edmond A. Harjo. Ada: Seminole Bilingual Education Project. PDF in 3 parts: 1 | 2 | 3
  • Factor, Susannah. 1979. Reading Book for Second Grade. Ohhonvyetv Cokv. Illustrated by Chester Scott. Ada: Seminole Bilingual Education Project. PDF in 2 parts: 1 | 2
  • Factor, Susannah. 1978. Maskoke (Muskokee) Unvkuce Cokv Enhvteceskv. [Muskogee First Story Book.] Illustrations by Chester Scott. PDF