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Who was Jennie 'Ani-waya' Cherokee

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Who was Jennie Ani-wa-ya?

1) Was she the daughter of Oconostota? No

2) Was she the wife of William Hicks? No

3) Was she the wife of Johann Conrad? Yes.

4) Was she the mother of Charles and Thomas Fox Taylor? Maybe

1) Oconostota had only one documented child, his son Tukeesee (The Terrapin)

2) Starr says “William Hicks was the son of Nathan Hicks, a white man, and a full blood woman of the Wolf clan. He was a younger brother of Charles R. Hicks ….” [1] William had two wives, Lydia Halfbreed and Sallie Foreman. [2] Starr incorrectly lists Lydia as the wife of Charles Hicks, but the Moravian journals and other records make it clear that Lydia was William’s wife.

3) Emmet Starr recorded an erroneous story that Johann Conrad was married to an English woman named Jennie Taylor, that she had a son named Charles Taylor and together they had a son named Hamilton Conrad. Other records make it clear that this was at best a very garbled family story. Starr also said "Hamilton" married a Cherokee woman named “Onai”. [3] According to the Moravian Journals, 3/25/1810, “Among others there was a half-German Cherokee here…. His father, whose name was John Gunrod according to his pronounciation [presumably Johannes Conrad], is supposed to have been a rather well-to-do Indian trader and was killed by Indians in a war when he [the son, Gunrod] was only 3-4 years old.” [4] There is no mention of the mother.

Johann and “Jennie” were the parents of “Gunrod”, whose wife may have been the woman named “Arle Gunrod” on the 1851 Drennan Roll. James Hicks speculates that they also were the parents of a woman named “Nan ye hi”, the mother of Charles and William Hicks. He bases this on a comment in the Moravian Diaries that Gunrod left his family to live with the family of Charles Hicks, ‘a close relative.’ [NOTE: I have not been able to find the source for this information. kpf] Charles Hicks’ wife was named Nan-ye-hi (Nancy) Broom, the daughter of Chief Broom of Broomtown and his wife Ajosta. The Moravian record from April 5, 1822, says, "Ajosta, the mother of our student Nancy, who ardently wishes to be baptized, was this day declared a candidate for holy baptism."[5]

Gunrod was the father of five children, only one of whom used the surname ‘Conrad’. That son, Terrapinhead Conrad, Conrad-2585 had a daughter named Jennie. Son Young Wolf Conrad-2582 also married a woman named “Jennie”.

4) If she was the mother of Thomas Taylor, she could not be of the Wolf Clan since Thomas’ wife, Jennie Walker, (granddaughter of Nancy Ward) was of the Wolf Clan. (Cherokee could not marry within the same clan.) Charles TaylorTaylor-26455 was born about 1730. According to Starr he was born in England and brought to America by his mother. He claimed to be related to the prominent Fox family of England.[6] Charles received a commission as an Ensign in one of the Independent Companies of the southern colonies (these were part of the British army) in 1754 and was commissioned as a lieutenant in 1756 [7] He was stationed at (and briefly in charge of) Fort Prince George and while in the Cherokee Nation he fathered two sons with a Cherokee woman. As far as is known, he never married or had other children. He died on July 15, 1774, in South Carolina, at the age of 44. [8]

"Charles Thomas Taylor came into the C[herokee] Nation a Captain in a Brittish Regiment & married a Cherokee woman by whom he had a son named Thomas. Thomas married a Cherokee woman by whom he had three children; Richard, Fox, & Susan, the first named Taylor was a natural son of the Fox family in England, on that account the son of Thomas was called Fox & they have ever since continued to say that they by blood are allied to the late Charles Fox. Thomas had a brother named Charles who died in the west Indies. The simple narative from the widow of Thomas [NOTE: this would be Jennie Walker] who is still living bears all the marks of truth. It will be observed that the first mentioned Taylor had a brother named Charles & a son also named Charles so that there were three heirs of that name including the first-mentioned, that bore the name of Charles & the son of the first named his son by the Cherokee woman Fox [knowing?] at the time that he named him after his great grandfather in England. November 14, 1811

[marginal notation:] The first Charles Taylor died in Charles Town, SoCarolina” [9]

Please note that there is limited information on these early Cherokee families, names were reused, and both Cherokee women and white men had children with multiple partners. Additional work is needed on the profiles for many of the individuals named here.


  1. Baker, Jack D. and Hampton, David K. Old Cherokee Famlies: Notes of Dr. Emmet Starr. Baker Publishing Co., Oklahoma City, 1988. Vol. 1, p. 119
  2. Crews and Starbuck, eds. Records of the Moravians Among the Cherokees. Cherokee Heritage Press, Tahlequah, OK, 2013. Vol. 5, p.2684.
  3. Starr, Emmet. History of the Cherokee Indians. Oklahoma Yesterday Publications edition, Tulsa, OK, 1993 pp. 474-475
  4. Crews and Starbuck, eds. Vol. 3, pp. 1375-76
  5. Missionary Herald for the year 1824. Vol XX. Published at the expense of the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions.
  6. Starr, pp. 474-475
  7. Clark, Murtie J. Colonial Soldiers of the South, 1732-1774; Georgia Militia. Baltimore, MD, USA: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1999.
  8. "Death Notices from the South Carolina & American General Gazette," in South Carolina Historical Magazine, ed. Mabel Louise Webber. South Carolina Historical Society, Baltimore MD, 1916, Vol. 17 p. 88
  9. RG75, Records of the Cherokee Agency in Tennessee, 1798-1838 (correspondence, 1811-1813) Microfilm #M208, Roll 6

Comments: 1

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This is great; now it would be awesome to add links to all the profiles mentioned in the narrative!
posted by Jillaine Smith