Date of Award
Mitchell, Mary Niall
In 1917, Henry Billiot sued the Terrebonne Parish School Board because his children, who identified as Houma Indian, were denied access to a local white school. The resulting case, Henry Billiot v. Terrebonne Parish School Board, shaped the way in which the community of Terrebonne Parish categorized the race of not only the Billiot family but also the Houma tribe over the course of fifty years. Through the use of Jim Crow legislation, the white community legally refused to consider the Houma tribe as American Indian, and instead chose the derogatory term Sabine as the racial classification of this indigenous group, which detrimentally impacted the United Houma Nation’s fight for federal recognition as an American Indian tribe.
Minchew, Racheal D., ""Because Colored Means Negro" The Houma Nation and its Fight for Indigenous Identity within a South Louisiana Public School System, 1916-1963" (2017). University of New Orleans Theses and Dissertations. 2346.