Buster Orphan, Chickasaw Minor

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Department Of The Interior
McAlester, Okla., December 9, 1910.

In the matter of the application for the enrollment of Buster Orphan as a citizen by blood of the Chickasaw Nation.

Proceedings had at McAlester, Okla., December 9, 1910, before W. C. Pollock, assistant attorney, Interior Department.

Appearances: M. M. Lindley, attorney for claimant; Rodgers & Clapp, by George D. Rodgers, attorneys for the Chickasaw Nation.

Silva Arpealer, being first duly sworn and examined, testified through George Nelson, official interpreter, as follows:

By Mr. Pollock:

Q. What is your name?-
A. Silva Arpealer.
Q. Do you know Buster Orphan?-
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Who was Buster’s father?-
A. Levi Orphan.
Q. Who was Buster’s mother?-
A. Rena.
Q. Were you present when Buster was born?-
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Can you tell how long ago that was?-
A. About six years ago.
Q. Buster is dead now, is he?-
A. He is dead.
Q. How Old was he when he died?-
A. He was between 2 and 3 years old.
Q. How long has he been dead?-
A. This boy died in September, but I don’t know whether It was two or three years ago.
(Witness excused.)

Rena Orphan, being first duly sworn and examined, testified through George Nelson, official Interpreter, as follows:

By Mr. Pollock:

Q. What is your name?-
A. Rena Orphan.
Q. Are you the wife of Levi Orphan?-
A. Yes.
Q. Did you have a boy named Buster Orphan?-
A. Yes sir.
Q. Can you tell when Buster was born?-
A. April 13, 1903.
Q. Did you put down the date?-
A. Yes, sir.
Q. In what kind of a book? Was it in writing?-
A. Cookbook.
Q. Did you put it down in the cookbook yourself?-
A. No, sir; Levi did.
Q. How long has Buster been dead?-
A. 1905.
Q. Have you got a book of Choctaw hymns? Didn’t Levi have that book with him last week?-
A. I guess not.
(Witness excused; case closed.)


Lee G. Grubbs, being first duly sworn, states that the foregoing Is a true and correct copy of his stenographic notes taken in said cause and on said date above mentioned.

Lee G. Gbubbs.

Subscribed and sworn to before me on this, the 14th day of December 1910.

R. P. Harrison, Clerk.
By A. G. McMillan. Deputy.


Department Of The Interior
Muskogee, Okla., December 23, 1910

In the matter of the application for the enrollment of Buster Orphan as a citizen by blood of the Chickasaw Nation.

Proceedings had at McAlester, Okla., November 30, 1910, before W. C. Pollock, assistant attorney, Interior Department.

Appearances: Rodgers & Clapp, by George D. Rodgers, for the Chickasaw Nation; McCurtain & Hill, by E. P. Hill, for the Choctaw Nation.

Gilbert H. Arpealer, sworn and examined as a witness, testified as follows:

By Mr. Pollock:

Q. Gilbert, do yon know Buster Orphan?-
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Who was his father?-
A. Levi Orphan.
Q. Who was his mother?-
A. Rena Orphan.
Q. What was her name before she was married?-
A. Rena Folsom.
W. Are either of them related to yon?-
A. Levi: he’s my half brother.
Q. Do you know how old Buster is?-
A. He’s over 5 years old.
Q. Buster Is living now, is he?-
A. No he’s dead.
Q. How long since he died?-
A. Been about two years.
Q. Can you give the date any closer than that, of his birth and death -
A. Died In the month of August.
Q. Two years ago?-
A. Yes, sir.
Q. And how old was he when he died?-
A. 3 years old when he died.
Q. Do you know in what month he was born?-
A. Born in April.
Q. Can yon tell the year?-
A. In 1905.
Q. Is his father living?-
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Where does he live?-
A. He lives close to Arpealer post office.
Q. Is he here to-day.-
A. No; he’s not here.
Q. Is Buster’s mother living?-
A. Yes, sir.
Q. They were married, were they?-
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Do you know whether any application was ever made for this child to be enrolled?-
A. I just tell Mr. Howell about it when he was here.

By Mr. Rodgers:

Q. Did Levi Orphan think the same way you did about the enrollment and allotment?-
A. Yes, sir.
Q. He didn’t believe at that time in enrolling himself or his children?-
A. I guess he believed it, but he listened to the other people.
Q. He listened to the same people that you did?-
A. Yes, sir.
Q. So, until Mr. Howell was down here, no application had ever been made before the commission or any officer of the Government?-
A. No.

By Mr. Hill:

Q. Whereabouts did Buster die?-
A. He died at Levi’s house, near Arpealer.
Q. This county?-
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Did anybody ever file any application hi the court here to be appointed administrator of Buster’s estate?-
A. No, sir.
Q. Where was Buster born?-
A. He was horn at Levi’s house in this county.
Q. In this county?-
A. Yes.
Q. Any record of his birth anywhere?-
A. I think he’s got one himself.
Q. Levi has one?-
A. Yes.
Q. What is it in; what is it; how does he keep that record?-
A. Got it in a book-song-Choctaw.
Q. In a Choctaw songbook?-
A. Yes.
Q. Who wrote it in there?-
A. Himself.
Q. Is it written in Choctaw or English?-
A. English.
Q. When was it written there?-
A. Well, I don’t know; I guess about the year 1905.
Q. Is that book here?-
A. No; he’s got it.
Q. Out there at home?-
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Is Levi here?-
A. No; he’s not here.

By Mr. Pollock:

Q. Gilbert, who was the leader of your band up there when the enrollment was being made?-
A. Well, just my father went up to Stonewall to enroll.
Q. Who is the leading man up there now?-
A. Charley Perry; he’s the oldest man.

(Witness excused.)


Ben Alberson, sworn and examined as a witness, testified as follows:
By Mr. Pollock:

Q. Ben. do you know Buster Orphan?-
A. Yes; I know him.
Q. What was his father’s name?–
A. Levi Orphan.
Q. What was his mother’s name?-
A. Rena Orphan.
Q. What was her name before she was married?-
A. Folsom.
Q. Do you remember when Buster was born?-
A. No, sir; I do not. I hate to say, because I don’t know the exact date.
Q. Well, about how long?-
A. If he was living I might know, but as to when be died I just-I can’t remember it now.
Q. How long ago did he die, Ben?-
A. Why, I think about three years ago.
Q. Can you tell about how old he was when he died?-
A. I think he was about 4 then-4 or 5; I don’t know which-when he died.
Q. Is Levi Orphan, his father, living?-
A. Yes, sir; he’s living.
Q. Does he live in the same neighborhood you do?-
A. Yes, sir; close to where I live.
Q. Is the mother living?-
A. Yes, sir: she’s living.
Q. You lived there close to them while Buster was living, did you?-
A. Yes, sir.
Q. You were there when he was born and died, both?-
A, Yes. sir. I don’t remember the date, but I reckon they got a record at home; they always write it down when they were born and died. They got it: I know they got it.
Q. Well, did you say anything to them about coining in here to-day?-
A. Well, Lindley was telling us about it when we were here last, and I told them about it, but they went hunting on the Canadian and said they would be back today, and if we wanted them they could come tomorrow.
Q. You tell Levi to come down with his wife and bring that record with them.-
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Do you know who was the midwife when Buster was born?-
A. I do not.
Q. And if they can bring the midwife, bring her, too?-
A. All right.

(Witness excused.)


December 1, 1910

Appearances: M. M. Lindley, attorney for claimant; D. C. McCurtain, for the Choctaw Nation.

Levi Orphan, sworn and examined as a witness, testified as follows, partly through George Nelson, official Choctaw interpreter:

By Mr. Pollock:

Q. What is your name?-
A. Levi Orphan.
Q. Are you a member of the Chickasaw Tribe of Indians?-
A. Yes.
Q. How much blood have you?-
A. Full blood.
Q. How old are you?-
A. Next March be 41.
Q. Are you married?-
A. Yes.
Q. What is your wife’s name?-
A. Rena Orphan.
Q. Is she a full-blood Chickasaw?-
A. Half Choctaw and half Chickasaw.
Q. Is she on the Choctaw or Chickasaw rolls?-
A. Chickasaw rolls.
Q. Have you any children?-
A. Yes.
Q. How many?-
A. Six living.
Q. Are all those children on the rolls?-
A. Not all on the roll.
Q. How many have you that are not on the roll?-
A. Four In all not on the roll-two living and two dead.
Q. Now, what is the name of the oldest of those four?-
A. Rena Orphan is the oldest of those four.
Q. Is Renn living?-
A. No; dead.
Q. Can you tell when Rena was born?-
A. (Witness presents a book from which he reads:) Rena was born May 8. 1903.
Q. When did Rena die?-
A. 1905; I don’t remember what month; I think it was February.
Q. Now, what is the name of the next oldest?-
A. Buster Orphan.
Q. When was Buster born?-
A. April 13, 1905.
Q. Blister is still living, is he?-
A. Dead.
Q. When did Buster die?-
A. September 7, 1905.
Q. The next of those four children was born after Buster?-
A. Yes.
Q. And after March 4, 1906?-
A. Yes.
Q. What is that book you have been looking at the dates in?-
A. That’s a song book-hymns-Choctaw.
Q. Who wrote these names and dates in hero?-
A. Myself.’
Q. When did you write Buster’s name In here?-
A. Same day the child was born.
Q. Were you and your wife married under the Chickasaw law?-
A. Yes.
Q. Were you married by a preacher?-
A. Yes: preacher Compalabee.
Q. Who was with your wife when Buster was born?-
A. Susan Brown.
Q. Is she still living?-
A. Yes.
Q. Have you ever made any application for Buster to be enrolled?-
A. I never did.
Q. Why didn’t you apply for him before this?-
A. I didn’t know anything about this going to be done is the reason I didn’t apply.

By. Mr. Lindley:

Q. Did you ever make application for the enrollment of any of your Children?-
A. Two.
Q. How many have you enrolled all together and got allotments?-
A. Five on the rolls.
Q. Who enrolled those five that you have got on the. rolls?-
A. I did myself, at Stonewall.
Q. At that time Buster wasn’t born, at the time you enrolled the rest of them?-
A. No, sir.
Q. Can you give the date of the enrollment of the five?-
A. No; don’t remember.
Q. They all got land, did they?-
A. Yes.

Note.-The book produced by the witness is entitled “Choctaw Hymns” and has an entry on the first page-” Buster Orphan. April 13. 1905.”

Witness is advised that the Secretary of the Interior can not enroll the child for whom application is made, unless Congress passes a law authorizing its enrollment.

(Witness excused.)


Albert O. McMillan, being duly sworn, states that he reported the proceedings had in the above entitled cause and that the foregoing is a true and correct transcript of his stenographic notes.

Albert G. McMillan. Subscribed and sworn to before me this 27th day of December 1910.

R. P. Harrison, Clerk United States Court.
By P. A. Harrison, Deputy



MLA Source Citation:

United States Congress. Five Civilized Tribes In Oklahoma, Reports of the Department of the Interior and Evidentiary Papers in support of S. 7625, a Bill for the Relief of Certain Members of the Five Civilized Tribes in Oklahoma, Sixty-second Congress, Third Session. Department of the Interior, United States. 1913. AccessGenealogy.com. Web. 26 July 2014. http://www.accessgenealogy.com/native/buster-orphan-chickasaw-minor.htm - Last updated on Oct 14th, 2012


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