Saponi is one of the eastern Siouan-language tribes, related to the Tutelo, Occaneechi, Monacan, Manahoac and other eastern Siouan peoples. Its ancestral homeland was in North Carolina and Virginia. The tribe was long believed extinct, as its members migrated north to merge with other tribes. It disappeared from the historical record as a tribe by the end of the 18th century. Three contemporary American Indian groups, each recognized by the state of North Carolina, claim descent from the historical Saponi. The people known as the Indians of Person County were recognized by North Carolina in 1911 as an American Indian tribe. In 2003 they formally changed their name to Sappony. The Haliwa-Saponi, a group based chiefly in Halifax and Warren counties, is another Native American band formally recognized by North Carolina (1965). They changed their name to include a reference to the historic Saponi.
Contributions by Parkwells, Til Eulenspiegel, and 126.96.36.199.