ORIGIN AND TRANSLATION OF THE NATIVE AMERICAN WORD, "ETOWAH"
Etowah is the only traditional community in Henderson County with a Native American name.
Of what origin? And what does the word "etowah" mean?
Etowah, formerly called Money, is named after the Etowah River in north Georgia.
The Etowah River runs through the part of Georgia near the Stewart plantation farm,
Margaret Stewart Gash's childhood home and the place where she married Joseph Leander Gash in 1871.
How Etowah Got Its Name
E t o w a h
From the Creek / Muskogee
Native American word
e t a l w a
" tribal town or ground"
While a number of different translations have been presented by various sources, this website uses the following source:
"A Dictionary of Creek/Muskogee"
by Jack B. Martin & Margaret McKane Mauldin
University of Nebraska Press
in cooperation with the American Indian Studies
Indiana University, Bloomington, 2000, pg. 41
DICTIONARY ENTRY, PG. 41
e tvl wv /(i)talwa/
phonemic sound: i talwa
'v' is pronounced as 'a' as in sofa
The Etowah River and Native American Chiefdom archeological site of northwest Georgia
Explanation of language family - Muskogean
- from the Introduction of the "Dictionary"
"Four hundred years ago a single language was shared among a large number of towns along the Coosa, Tallapoosa, Alabama, Chattohoochee, and Flint rivers of Alabama and Georgia. It was the most widely spokien language in the region, used for diplomacy, medicine, and personal names even in towns where other languages were used for every day speech. The language the townspeople shared came to be known as Este Maskoke em opunvkv, or the language of the Muskogee people.
English settlers later called it Creek, because the towns they first encountered were on Ocheese Creek (now called Ocmlgee River). Today the English words Creek and Muskogee are used interchangeably by some, though the term Creek is still better known. ...
Creek is a member of the Muskogean family, one of five language families indigenous to the Southeastern United States."
[these are: Muskogean, Algonquian, Caddoan, Iroquoian, Siouan]
[italics are from the Dictionary]
The Etowah Indian Mounds Historic Site, adjacent to the Etowah River is located outside of Cartersville, Georga in Bartow County.
From the website: "Home to several thousand Native Americans from 1000 A.D. to 1550 A.D., this 54-acre site protects six earthen mounds, a plaza, village site, borrow pits and defensive ditch. Etowah Mounds is the most intact Mississippian Culture site in the Southeast. "