I am Stephen Carr Hampton, a registered citizen of Cherokee Nation. My father, Albert Hampton, is from Grove, Oklahoma. He grew up attending the Green Corn Dances, proud of his elders, some of whom held prominent positions in the Cherokee community (such as John Calvin Martin Jr., member of the 1827 Cherokee Constitutional Convention and first Chief Justice and Treasure of Cherokee Nation pre-removal; Richard Fox Taylor, member of the Cherokee National Committee pre-removal and signer of the 1839 Cherokee Constitution post-removal; and Jefferson Thompson Parks, Chief Justice of Cherokee Nation post-removal).
I am a direct descendant of Nancy Ward. Unlike her, I’m no battlefield tactician, just a writer. I have never lived on the Cherokee reservation so I cannot speak from that perspective. Full disclosure– I’m descended from Old Settlers, Trail of Tears survivors, and Cherokees who stayed in the East, as well as English, Irish, and Scottish traders (such as Ludovic Grant and, by marriage, John “Bushyhead” Stuart), Loyalists and Revolutionaries, Confederates and Unionists.
My father was part of the diaspora from Oklahoma to California (see the map showing where Cherokees are today). That’s where he met my mother, a second generation Slovak from Ohio. I came along after that, in the yellow area in southern California. I’ve since moved to northern California where there is also an active Cherokee community.
I currently work as a tribal liaison (among other roles) for California Department of Fish & Wildlife’s Office of Spill Prevention and Response. We deal with oil spills and other pollution events. All opinions expressed here are purely my own. All information referred to here is publicly available.
This blog is dedicated to un-erasing Native American history and shining a light on contemporary issues. I aim especially to provide historical context and parallels to current events.