Published on December 6, 2010 by John
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Shade speaking at
Cherokee National Holiday,
Tahlequah, Oklahoma, 2001
Hastings Shade (May 20, 1941 – February 9, 2010) was a former deputy chief of the Cherokee Nation. He was a traditionalist, artist, and master level fluent speaker of the Cherokee language.
Hastings Shade was born on May 20, 1941 in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. His parents were Tom and Leanna Stopp Shade.
Hastings Shade was declared a Cherokee National Treasure in 1991 for his extensive traditional knowledge, particularly his ability to make Cherokee marbles by hand. He was the only known maker of Cherokee marbles (gadayosdi). He painstakingly fashioned the balls from limestone and they are about the size of a billiards ball.
He also made fishing and frog gigs that are sought after by collectors
Shade served one term as deputy chief of the Cherokee Nation, from 1999 to 2003, with Chad Smith. In an unusual political move, Shade ran independently for deputy chief in 2003 but did not win the election. During his time in office, he helped develop the Cherokee Nation’s language programs, specially the Cherokee language immersion programs for school children.
Shade was a fullblood Cherokee and a sixth-generation descendant of Sequoyah, the inventor of the Cherokee syllabary. Hastings was married to Loretta Shade, also a master level fluent speaker of the Cherokee language. Together they lived in Lost City, outside of Hulbert, Oklahoma. Shade died on February 9, 2010 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He is survived by his wife, their four sons, four siblings, and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren. “He foremost was a gentleman and a traditionalist who was fluent in Cherokee language and conversant in Cherokee thought. He was a teacher”, said Chad Smith.
Shade, Hastings. Myths legends and old sayings. Self published, 1994. ASIN B0006RH39I
Cowan, Agnes, Loretta Shade, Hastings Shade, Agnes Louise Clark, and Jane B. Noble. Cherokee English Language Reference Book. Welling: Cross-Cultural Education Center Inc., 1995. ASIN B00182V8YQ.