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A Tribute to Thanksgiving

“I’m takin’ ya back come follow me. On a journey to see a for real emcee……”
How Many MC’s
Buckshot Shorty
Black Moon
Enta da Stage
October 19, 1993
We are heading into the 2018 holiday season. It is during this time that I fondly think back to my childhood. Growing up in New York, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade reminds me of the holidays. Also, the family Thanksgiving prayer where we would all take turns saying what we were thankful for.
Walking through a state office building I noticed an advertisement for the 341st Virginia Annual Indain Tax Tribute. Struck me as very odd. Indians hanging out at the Capitol with the Governor. But at any rate, I started my research. So, let us start with a definition to all bring us to a common starting point.
According to Merriam-Webster:
Tribute: Noun. An act, statement or gift that his intended to show gratitude, respect or admiration.
A historical payment made periodically by one state or ruler to another, especially as a sign of dependence.
Let us remember we are talking about the Indians (or what people historically think are Indians) paying tribute with a tax to some figure who we know historically speaking oppressed their people.
That was my baseline. So, now let’s do the math. 2018 – 341 = 1677. 1677 puts us back to Virginia as a colony. The Virginia Annual Indian Tax Tribute started in 1677. One year prior per my Google search is Bacon’s Rebellion of 1676. Let’s look at that.
Nathaniel Bacon led a group of settlers to fight against the British Governor of the Virginia Colony William Berkley. Seems Berkley did not want to engage the Indians in fighting but, did not want to allow Bacon to trade with the Indians or allow him to become a part of the British ruling class.
Because Berkley was putting Bacon off, he decided to rally his people together to fight the British. But, here is where the story in my opinion gets interesting. Bacon’s people included the following, black and white indentured servants, African slaves, frontier farmers. So Bacon successfully got colonial Virginians to stand up and fight together (something that may not have been done successfully since then and something many of us struggle to do now).
The Bacon Rebellion of 1676 did not beat the English or send them packing back across the pond. King Charles II removed Berkley as the Governor of the Colony of Virginia and sent a new Governor. With this changing of the guard, the new political head wanted to make sure everything remained calm on the colonial front. So, here comes the Virginia Annual Indian Tax Tribute of 1677.
During the first annual celebration each of the Indian tribes brought the Governor of the Colony of Virginia 20 beaver pelts (this according to the Treaty of Middle Plantation). 341 years later, we allow the Indian tribes to bring a deer. Sidebar, in 2010, Republican Governor Bob McDonnell fed the homeless with the deer meat. (Shout to Former Governor McD!)
More about the Treaty of Middle Plantation. It guaranteed homeland territories, hunting and fishing rights and the right to keep and bear arms as long as the Indians maintained obedience and subjugation to the English Empire.
But, in order the Colony of Virginia and the British crown would make sure we did not have anymore “unification” Bacon style, we get the Virginia Slave Codes of 1705. This successfully separated us into a class system where enslaved Africans, black indentured servants could be separated from white farmers, white indentured servants and the ruling class.
My mind was blown by this time after two days of reading, researching and tumbling farther down the rabbit hole.
Never attended the Virginia Annual Indian Tax Tribute. But, thus far from what I have read, seems like a dog and pony show.
But, what the hell, getting home from work at 0100 hours (1:00 am to you all not on a 24 hour clock) I had some time before the sandman came for me.
At this time 1677 there were 30 Indian tribes in the Colony of Virginia. Indigenous people called this land Turtle Island (I will get into that in another contribution in the near future). But according to my research, by the time of the tax tribute, only two tribes were recognized by Virginia. Smh from 30 to 2?!
Furthermore I find that according to archaeologists, indigenous people and successive cultures have been living in Virginia for 15,000 years. So, you and your people are home on Turtle Island (the original name for America) for 15,000 years. Some new set of people invade your land and then after a disturbance make you pay “tribute” in order to be on land that you already own.
Whiskey, Tango, Foxtrot!!!! Confederate statues and flags seem real pale (no pun intended) in comparison to this. People need truth. This is truth. What happens is truth get buried where people forget and don’t care because to many, this may not seem important.
My mom’s family was from Newport News. Feeling like for 2019, I need to trace my family tree back. Because, I have some feeling like my mom’s people may have been indigenous peoples of Virginia.
Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.

About Corey Fauconier

Corey “Sage” Fauconier is a native of Cambria Heights, Queens, New York who currently resides in Chesterfield County, Virginia. He is a graduate of Hampton University with a degree in Political Science (1994) and a Paralegal Studies Certificate (1996). Former Libertarian Candidate for Virginia State Senate (2017). First Black Communications Chair of the Libertarian Party (2016), Lobby Day Leader for the Virginia Citizens Defense League, second amendment supporter, volunteer with Generation Hip Hop VA and host of independent podcast Talks Over Drinks in Richmond, Virginia.

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Tom White Says:

Nothing is more conservative than a republican wanting to get their majority back. And nothing is more liberal than a republican WITH a majority.

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