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Cultures of the Red River Valley

Fannin County Sulphur River Davis Creek Cemetery Search ruts.jpg

Wagon tracks in Fannin County, Texas.

As a former international border region, the Red River Valley naturally attracted people from all over the geographical spectrum. The valley's earliest and longest inhabitants, the Caddos, birthed similar but distinct cultures who called the river home. When the European colonists came, they brought with them not only linguistic and religious differences, but also Africans, another "old world" ethnicity. When the Americans joined them in the Valley, more native (North) American and African American people settled along the river.

This melding brought about a "New World" ethnicity, meaning people who could claim ancestry from the Eurasian, African, and North American continents (including the Caribbean and Latin America. Do you know how many people don't know that North America ends at the isthmus of Panama?!)

While not all migrations were voluntary, mobility is nonetheless the key to history. People move for food and work and land; they move under duress, such as fleeing from war or persecution; they move after being kidnapped or running away from being kidnapped; they move as refugees or "immigrants."

For whatever the reason people leave their homes, what they all have in common is that they are, essentially, the threads in the cultural tapestry that makes up the Red River Valley. They contribute their recipes, their labor, their music, their stories, and their values.

The Red River Valley is an incredibly diverse place!

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