An enrolled member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, Lloyd Arneach was born and reared on the Cherokee Reservation in Cherokee, North Carolina. He learned his first legends from two storytelling Uncles on the reservation. His father was Vice-Chief of the Eastern Band, his mother was the first woman ever elected to the Tribal Council and his Grandmother (Lula Owl Gloyne) was a Beloved Woman of the tribe.
From 1970 to 1990, Lloyd traveled throughout the state of Georgia, lecturing on Cherokee history and culture. This was done in his spare time while working for AT&T's computer department in Atlanta. In 1990, he added storytelling to his presentations on culture and history and in 1993 began a full-time career as both storyteller and historian.
Lloyd presents his stories in a style that is humorous, informative and extremely moving. Lloyd's stories range from the "old stories" of the Cherokee to contemporary stories he has collected; from creation stories to behind the scenes of "Dances with Wolves." He tells stories of different Native Americans: Floyd Red Crow Westerman; Billy Mills, an Olympic champion; a young Cree Indian girl with no stories to tell; and a postmaster on the Papago Reservation. He shares historical stories from a variety of Native American tribes. Some of these stories are difficult for Lloyd to tell because of the strong feelings associated with his experiences as a Native American.
Lloyd lectures on Cherokee history and culture in schools, universities, libraries, museums, historical societies, and civic groups. If requested, he can bring a number of Native American artifacts to show and demonstrate. Lloyd also conducts workshops on Native American storytelling, building appreciation of Native American culture and what the stories mean to the cultures from which they grew.
He has told stories at the Kennedy Center (Washington, D.C.), National Folklife Festival (Washington, D.C.), the opening of the National Museum of the American Indian (Washington, D.C.), the Winnepeg International Storytelling Festival (Canada), festivals, schools, universities, Pow-Wows, theaters, and other venues throughout the United States. His CD Can You Hear the Smoke? features stories and legends adapted by Lloyd. During the summer of 2006, Lloyd performed in the Cherokee outdoor drama Unto These Hills - A Retelling. In the summer of 2008, Lloyd once again performed in the Cherokee outdoor drama Unto These Hills - A Retelling, playing the role of Tsali.
He has told stories on the Discovery Channel.
In 1992, Children's Press published his book, The Animal's Ballgame, based on one of Lloyd's favorite Cherokee animal stories.This book is now out of print.
Lloyd wrote a book of Cherokee stories,Long-Ago Stories of the Eastern Cherokee, that was released in early 2008. The book is now in it's third printing (2011).
He was included in an article on storytellers in the 2010 Winter issue of the American Indian Magazine produced by the National Museum of the American Indian.
He received the Mountain Heritage Award from Western Carolina University in September, 2011.
He was included in a Cherokee Edition of The Foxfire Magazine, Fall/Winter 2012, Volume 46, Issues 181 & 182.
Lloyd now lives in Cherokee, North Carolina.