Choctaw-Apache Tribe of Ebarb

CLICK HERE for photos from one of the Pow-wows

by Hiram F. "Pete" Gregory

A state-recognized group, part Lipan and part Choctaw, this community has lived in Sabine Parish since the 1700s. It maintains a tribal office in Zwolle, Louisiana and a pow-wow ground at Ebarb, Louisiana. Primarily English-speaking, elders are equally at ease in Spanish, and sprinkle in words from Nahuatl, Choctaw, and Coahuitecan. The tribe retains traditional crafts such as white oak basketry and foodways, such as tamales, chardizos, and salsas, as well as pan-tribal arts and crafts. Ebarb Choctaw-Apache folk artists include: Thomas Ebarb, Rhonda Gauthier
The above is from: http://alpha.nsula.edu/departments/folklife/cultures/ebarb.html

by Tommy Bolton, Tribal Chief

The Choctaw-Apache Community of Ebarb is located in western Sabine Parish and includes in its ancestral territory the municipalities of Converse, Noble, and Zwolle, and communities of Ebarb, Blue Lake, and Grady Hill. Officially recognized by the state of Louisiana in 1977, the Tribe is the second largest of eight officially recognized American Indian groups within the state. The Tribe is currently seeking recognition by the U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Indian Affairs. A petition for federal recognition was done in December of 1998, and we are awaiting word on the outcome of the petition. We learned in December, 1999, that the petition was in the Technical Assistance stage, in other words the BIA was reviewing it to assertain whether there are grounds to continue on with the process or not.

Currently there are 3276 persons eligible for membership with the Tribe. 1,400 live within the ancestral boundaries, the remainder live elsewhere in the state and from coast to coast and border to border of the United States. The two primary schools in which our children are enrolled (Ebarb and Zwolle) have combined tribal student population of over 600, and both schools receive some funding under Department of Education, Office of Indian Education, programs.

Historically, we are descendants of Apache slaves who were sold at slave markets in French and Spanish colonial era Natchitoches and Los Adaes. Oral history tells us that our Choctaw ancestors arrived in the region during the late 1700's and early 1800's, many in search of better hunting territories. Additionally, the first Indian agent of the Louisiana Purchase territory, Dr. John Sibley, gave refuge to Choctaw in an effort to protect them from persecution by their Creek neighbors, and subsequently moved two families into the area during the middle 1820's. Recent research into the tribe's history has brought to light that many of our Indian ancestors were natives of the Spanish mission and presidio of Los Adaes, adding a strong Adais identity to the Tribe. This fact dates the tribe's ancestry to the early 1720's and gives us the distinction of being one of the few native Indian groups of the state.

The first weekend in May of each year the Tribe hosts a traditional powwow at the Ebarb High School ball park. This event is attended by many of our Indian friends from across the country, representing 20 or more different tribes, and is an alcohol and drug free event suited for families. The general public is invited to attend and to enjoy the music, dance, food, and arts and crafts. CLICK HERE for pictures from one of the Pow-Wows.. For more information, contact the Tribal Office.

Choctaw-Apache Tribe Of Ebarb
PO Box 1428
15260 Hwy 171
Zwolle, LA 71486
Phone: (318) 645-2588
Fax: (318) 645-2589

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