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Sac & Fox of Iowa - Iowa (U.S.)

Native American

Last modified: 2017-08-23 by rick wyatt
Keywords: sac & fox of iowa | iowa | native american |
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[Sac & Fox of Iowa - Iowa flag] image by Donald Healy, 30 January 2008

See also:

The Band

[Sac & Fox of Iowa - Iowa map]
map image by Peter Orenski based on input from Don Healy

Sac & Fox of Iowa - Iowa

The Sac, or Sauk, an Algonquin word meaning "yellow earth people" and the Fox, or Mesquaki, meaning "red earth people" originated in what is now Illinois and Wisconsin (ENAT, 210-212). Today the two Tribes, which have been close allies and friends since joining in 1734 to repulse attacks from an alliance of the Ojibwe and the French (ENAT, 86-87), occupy three distinct reservations in Iowa, Kansas, and Oklahoma.

The Sac and Fox Tribe of the Mississippi in Iowa have a reservation in central Iowa known as the Mesquaki Indian Settlement.

© Donald Healy 2008

The Flag

This Iowa band possesses a flag of simple design but complex meaning. A simple bicolor of green over red, it signifies that the two Nations have come together as one people (sketch and explanation provided by the Sac & Fox Tribal Headquarters).

Green symbolizes life, peace, and spring, and represents the “peace chief”, one of the three members of the tribal authority. Red stands for death, war, autumn - a time when much of life fades away, and the “war chief”. Traditionally, when war was imminent, tribal peace pipes would have their traditional white feathers replaced by red feathers. (The third member, the shaman or “ceremonial chief” is not represented.)

© Donald Healy 2008
information provided by Peter Orenski, 30 January 2008

I recently encountered a member of this tribe, who informed me that there are two other groups of this tribe, a large one in Oklahoma and a smaller one in Missouri. The flag of the Oklahoma group is at Sac & Fox of Oklahoma; a better detail of the seal is at The second symbol on the shield, by the way, is the shield from the U.S. coat of arms, with a star in the chief.
Nathan Lamm, 12 August 2002