Newspaper articles, terrebonne parish

The last of the Houmas Indians

Sambo Finch

According to old version of a Houma newspaper, the man above was the last of the Houmas Indians.

Francois “Sambo” Finch supposedly lived 105 years. He farmed near Pointe-aux-Chenes and knelt down to work the fields when he got too old to stand. His prized possession was a buffalo rifle. He died in the 1940s and migrated to Houma from Donaldsonville with other Indians. He lost his right leg at the knee “running from the (Civil) war” because he didn’t want to be part of that.

All of this was according to his grandson, Panchio Billiot, who was pushing for federal recognition of the Houmas Indians when he spoke to the “Houma Daily Courier.”

Billiot said his grandfather was a medicine man who treated whites and Indians alike. His remedy for a cut to avoid tetanus was to apply a mush of big, red roaches to it.


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