Our First Mention

 The  first written mention of the Waccamaw Siouan appeared in historical  records of 1712 when a special effort was made to persuade the tribe  along with the Cape Fears to join James Moore’s expedition against the  Tuscarora. It is believed that the Waccon Indian, the Siouan tribe which  Lawson placed a few miles to the south of the lower or hostile  Tuscarora, ceased to exist by the name Waccon but that they moved  southward as a group and became the Waccamaw Indians. Tribal names were  often changed or altered, especially by the whites in their spellings,  and the Waccamaw appeared first in historical records at about the same  time the Waccons disappeared. 


 The  Waccamaw, then known as the Waccommassus, were located one hundred  miles northeast of Charleston, South Carolina. In 1749, a war broke out  between the Waccamaw and the State of South Carolina. Twenty nine years  later, in May 1778, provision was made by the Council of South Carolina  to render them protection. After the Waccamaw and South Carolina war the  Waccamaw sought refuge in the swamplands of North Carolina. The present  home of the Waccamaw Siouan, is situated on the edge of the Green swamp  about thirty-seven miles west of Wilmington, North Carolina. 

Swamp Life

 Lawson  and Lederer early explorers of the Carolinas, mention the existence of  the Waccamaw Siouan whom they reported were part of the Eastern Sioux  Nation but never visited their forbidden swampland refuge. Though, the  language is now lost, certain conclusions can be drawn from the  knowledge of the Catawba language. A game played by the Catawba Indian  Children is spelled Wap-ka-hare. This almost unpronounceable name is  translated as "ball knock." To hear an Indian say it, it sounds  "Wahumwar." It is reasonable to believe the Waccamaw is an English  translation of a part of the phrase that told of the ball of fire that  knocked into the earth and created the lake known today as Lake  Waccamaw. The natural conclusion, substantiated by these theories, is  that the Waccamaw are the "People of the Falling Star."