In 1821, Sequoyah singlehandedly created a syllabary, or writing system, for his people, the Cherokee Indians. Within a few years, the tribe’s literacy rate was far higher than their white neighbors. First published in 1829, the Cherokee Hymnbook contained the lyrics to sacred songs, written in Cherokee, using Sequoyah’s syllabary. It was a groundbreaking achievement, created for an audience who could both read Cherokee and sing by heart the tunes that went with the lyrics. Nearly two centuries later, in 2014, a new edition of the Cherokee Hymnbook was published — keeping alive both the language and the sacred music.