On 14 August 1993, in Troup, Texas, four men, D. L. Utsidihi Hicks, A. J. Bucktail Jessie, Douglas Wasini Watson, and David Adastiyali Hicks Jr., met to re-instate the Tsalagiyi Nvdagai (TN), "Cherokees in Texas," which had been inactive in public as a tribe since they were forced by gun and knife to leave their homes and planted fields on 16 July 1839. The Tsalagiyi Nvdagi was reconstituted to represent all Texas Cherokee and their brother tribesmen throughout the United States.
It was decided that a provisional government would be formed to write a constitution, appoint leaders, who would later be elected, and decide on the many subjects and concerns that must be addressed when forming a new government. Utsidihi Hicks was elected Ugu, "Head Chief," while A. B. Jessie, Doug Watson, and Dave Hicks Jr. were appointed by the chief to form the nucleus of the Tribal Council. Three more council members were appointed by Chief Hicks until the chief and council members could stand for election by the general membership of the tribe.
A Constitutional Convention was called to write a Tribal Constitution. The Constitution called for three divisions of government: an Executive, lead by an Ugu and Deputy Chief; a Legislative, to be called the Council, made up of seven members; a Judicial, with elected judges. The Tribal Seal is to be kept within the old treaty area of the tribe received from the Republic of Texas no matter who becomes Ugu.
The Ani-Tsalagi or "Cherokee" as they are called by outsiders and universally known, are a people of the Ugaya, the "Seven Clan Society." There has never been a "Cherokee Indian Princess" in the history of the Ani-Tsalagi or other hereditary leaders. Centuries before recorded time, the Ani-Tsalagi elected all of their leaders, from the clan, to the district, and to the highest offices of the nation. These new leaders also believe in elections, and no society or council can take over and run Texas Cherokee without the pleasure of and elections held by the citizens.
The Ugu and Governing Council call upon any and all people of Cherokee heritage to contact them to learn how they can become a part of the Tribe. We are looking for people of Cherokee heritage and who have kept it in the family for these past generations since we have been torn from our people.
Since this is a new beginning with no outside source of funds, we ask you to send a self addressed and stamped envelope when requesting information. A donation of at least $10.00 is asked for new enrolling members to help pay for the postage and printing of membership cards and other correspondence. Of course, pay only what you can afford, for we wish to provide membership to all those who qualify without regard to money. If you are of Cherokee blood, you have a right to belong to the Texas Cherokee. With your help, we can make this a strong tribe and build to preserve our ancestors heritage for future generations to come.
The people of the Texas Cherokee are an indigenous people of the land who have come forth, and now are determined to announce and express their American Indian heritage.
We are here, for we have never left!
Hayv (It is true).
Chief D. L. Utsidihi Hicks
A. B. Jessie
Doug Wasini Watson
Dave Adastiyali Hicks