Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana

Mailing Address

151 Melacon Drive
Marksville, LA 71351

Contact Information

318-253-9767

Website

http://www.tunica.org/

Casino(s)

Cultural History

The Tunica and Biloxi Indians has lived near Marksville Louisiana on a reservation for two centuries. Amazingly, they have different languages but they were able to live together. The motto of their Tunica-Biloxi flag "Cherishing our Past" actually correlates with their history when they were not yet in Marksville. Among southern Mississippi valley tribes, their history is an odyssey without parallel. In "The Tunica Trail" written by Dr. Jeffrey P. Brain, he recounted that the Tunica lived in Quizquiz which holds the central power in northwestern Mississippi. It was on 1541 that the Spanish explorer named De Soto encountered them there.

This tribe gave their widespread influence in this territory more than what the Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Tennessee, Louisiana, Alabama, and even Florid did.

People of this tribe are already open to trading and enterprising. They just went to Southern Mississippi to avoid the European diseases and warfare. They followed the Mississippi river to change place.

On the other hand, the Biloxi tribe is located on the Mississippi Gulf Coast which is now popularly known as Biloxi, Mississippi. French colonizers, Jean Baptiste Le Moyne first encountered them in 1669. An alliance happened between French and Biloxi just like what the Tunica experienced. This brought a very big advantage to them especially when it comes to their economic as political progress. After the departure of French, they became allied to Spanish people who are the rulers of Florida that time.  
The Tunica gained lots of European artifacts because of their skills and great ties not only with the French government but as well as with the Spanish. This is the root of the motto of the Tunica Flag "Building For Our Future". It is written as that because they had a hard time before they were federally considered in 1981. They also did their best to find the "Tunica Treasure" until the time came that they were already building the Tunica-Biloxi Museum that will house the said treasure. The recovery of the treasure led to the new Federal Law's foundation which is called the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act.

The complete motto of the Tunica-Biloxi flag "Cherishing Our Past Building Our Future" really includes their several centuries of struggles and pain before they got the victory that they want. Their perseverance contributed to the Native American Belief "the reverence and preservation of ancestral remains." In 1992, this flag was developed by the tribe. The yellow-beaked head of an eagle appears in white with black detail at the right side of the flag. They actually got the idea of this design from the ancient southeastern Indian design. Reproducing an artistic feature from the Mississippian Period, the forked-eye design is very important to them because it leads to their history when this design is still used in conch shells, copper and pottery. Dominating the white-bordered red disk which symbolizes the sun is the yellow-beaked eagle. The unseen power is the symbol of the black rayed design behind the sun. 

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