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McIntosh, William (1778?–30 April 1825), military leader and high-ranking chief in the Creek Nation, was born in Coweta, in present-day Russell County, Alabama, the son of Captain William McIntosh, a recruiter for the British army, and Senoya, a full-blooded Creek. McIntosh was raised as a Creek, enduring the customary rites of passage and advancing to the rank of chief, ...

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Ridge, John (1803–22 June 1839), Cherokee leader, was born in Oothcaloga, Georgia, the son of Major Ridge, a Cherokee leader, and Susanna Wickett. As a young man Ridge was slight, delicate, and walked with a limp because of a hip problem, but he appeared to be a bright and eager student. His parents stressed education early in the boy’s life, and he attended a mission school at age seven. Ridge was a quick learner and felt that the school system, which called for advanced students to tutor younger, slower students, was retarding his education. Therefore, he, with several other Cherokee students, attended a school in Cornwall, Connecticut, in 1818. There they received religious and agricultural training and studied geography, history, rhetoric, surveying, Latin, and natural science....

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Spotted Tail (1823–05 August 1881), leader of the Brulé [Sican gu] Teton, leader of the Brulé [Sican gu] Teton, was born in south-central South Dakota, the son of modest parents. (His name in his native tongue was Sinte Gleska.) At an early age, Spotted Tail sought a position of political leadership. As a young man he valiantly fought the Pawnee, earning his people’s approval and becoming a praiseworthy man. This was his first step toward political leadership, and it enabled him to understand that political gain could be achieved by waging a successful military expedition....