The Cherokee Scot

A new edition of a wartime memoir

In early nineteenth-­century Upper Canada, what today is Ontario, John Norton was an important if largely forgotten link between the Six Nations of the Haudenosaunee, or Iroquois, and the British. Known in Mohawk as Teyoninhokarawen, he was born across the ocean in 1770, of Cherokee and Scottish descent, and is a testament to the dynamic relationships among Indigenous and European peoples of the period. Lesser known than other figures — including the Mohawk war chief Joseph Brant and his sister, the clan mother Molly Brant — Norton left behind a rich literary legacy in the form of Journal of a Voyage of a Thousand Miles Down the Country of the Cherokees: Through the States of Kentucky and Tennessee. Completed in 1816, but not published for another 150 years, the memoir describes, among other things, his trip to the American Southeast, where he tried to connect with his father’s...