Ethnie: SEWEE
Language: Catawba
Family: Southeastern Siouan
Stock: Siouan Proper
Phylum: Siouan
Macro-Culture: Eastern Woodlands
Speakers None
       The Sewee were a sedentary hunter/ farmer tribe. The eastern Siouans fissioned from the greater Siouan culture about 1,000 B. C. and crossed the Appalachians displacing the previous inhabitants. The Sewee lived along the lower course of the Santee River and southwest along the coast to about present Charleston, South Carolina.
      They developed a theoretically ingenious enterprise which would eliminate the British middlemen in fur trade. They constructed large ocean going canoes with mat sails an set out for Europe. The experiment unfortunately killed nearly every able bodied male in the tribe.
Aboriginal Locations: Subdivisions (Villages)
SC    (1)
Present Locations
Year History
1521 A Sewee carried away by Spanish
1609 Tribe mentioned by Captain Ecija
1670 May have been first Indians met by English colonists, provided Whites with corn, assisted them against Spaniards, decimated by smallpox, alcoholism rampant
1701 Visited by Lawson; had just lost a fleet of canoes attempting to sail to England for purposes of fur trade, canoes swamped in a storm, survivors picked up by a British ship and enslaved
1715 Reduced to one village in Yamasee War, ultimately joined Catawba after temporary fusions with the Santee and/or Cheraw
Year Total SC  Pop. Source
1600 800 Mooney estimate
1700 50 NAHDB calculation
1715 57   Indian census
1800 0 NAHDB calculation
1900 0 NAHDB calculation 
2000 0 NAHDB calculation 
Other speakers of the same language:
Catawba, Cheraw, Congaree, Santee, Wateree, Waxhaw, Woccon
Sewee Sites:
Catawba Language
Catawba Language
Catawba Language
Catawba Language Department
Catawba Linguistic Lineage
Indian Trader John Lawson's Journal
Sewee Indian Shell Mounds
Sewee Indian Tribe History

Last updated 10/11/05  Copyright 2005 by Four Directions Press