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Vaughn – Duncan Consolidated Cases, M. C. R

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Robert L. Vaughn Et Al., M. C. R. 340. Annie M. Duncan Et Al., M. C. R. 339.

June 19, 1900. Applications were made to the commission at Colbert, Ind. Ter., for the enrollment of Robert L. Vaughn and his minor children, Edna A. Vaughn, Arthur C. Vaughn, Walter A. Vaughn, Victor K. Vaughn, Ora M. Vaughn, Mary J. Vaughn, Robert Vaughn, and for the enrollment of Annie M. Duncan and her minor children, Jesse Duncan, Robert L. Duncan, Mary E. Duncan, as Mississippi blood Choctaws.

Annie M. Duncan and Robert L. Vaughn, the two principal claimants, are brother and sister and claim through the same ancestors. ‘The examination of records show that when said applications were made the applicants testified to, among other, the following facts:

Annie M. Duncan, 30 years old, child of Allen Vaughn, half-blood Choctaw, and grandchild of Alexander Vaughn, a full-blood Choctaw, who resided in the Choctaw Nation, Mississippi, in 1830. Applicant, Annie M. Duncan, was born in the Choctaw Nation and had lived in the Choctaw-Chickasaw Nations all her life; had been recognized by the Choctaw Indians as a Choctaw, though not officially recognized by the Choctaw national authorities; had held and improved land as other Choctaws; had never applied for enrollment or admission to citizenship in the nation prior to this application, as it had never been necessary, as she was a Choctaw Indian and her rights had never been disputed. She claimed that her grandfather was a beneficiary under the fourteenth article of the treaty of 1830.

Robert L. Vaughn, 39 years old, testified that he was born and had lived in the nations all his life; was the son of Allen Vaughn, a half- breed and a grandson of Alexander Vaughn, a full blood, who took land under the treaty of 1830; that his rights as a Choctaw had never been disputed; that he had exercised all the rights of a Choctaw, but did not know whether his name appeared on any of the rolls. He stated that he applied to the commission in 1896, but his application was received too late and was returned to him; that ho again applied in 1899, at Atoka, for enrollment as a Choctaw Indian, and that he now applied for enrollment as a Mississippi Choctaw.

The applications in both of these cases were submitted for the enrollment of the claimants as Mississippi Choctaws because of the act of May 31,1900, which prohibited the commission from receiving, considering, or making any record of any application of any person not a recognized and enrolled member of the tribe. This act did not apply to Mississippi Choctaws who were beneficiaries or descendants or beneficiaries under article 14 of the treaty of 1830.

Other witnesses testified before the commission to the facts as stated by the claimants, and on August 21, 1902, the commission rendered its decision, in which it says:

It also appears that all of the said applicants claim rights in the Choctaw lands under article 14 of the treaty between the United States and the Choctaw Nation concluded September 27, 1830, by reason of being descendants of one Alexander Vaughn, who is alleged to have been a full-blood Choctaw and to have resided in the old Choctaw Nation, States of Mississippi and Alabama, in 1830.

It further appears from the evidence submitted in support of said applications and from the records In the possession of the commission that no one of said applicants has ever been enrolled as a member of the Choctaw Tribe by the Choctaw tribal authorities or admitted to Choctaw citizenship by a duly constituted court or committee of the Choctaw Nation, or by the Commission to the Five Civilized Tribes, or by a decree of the United States court in Indian Territory under the provisions of the act of Congress approved June 10, 1896.

From the records in the possession of the commission it is found that the name of one Alexander Vaughn appears upon page 27, volume 1, Court of Claims Record, The Choctaw Nation v. The United States, in a list of Choctaw Indians whose reservations were sold under article 14 of the treaty of 1830.

It Is further found that the name of one Alexander Vaughn appears on page 116 of volume 7, American State Papers, Public Lands, in a list of names of Choctaw Indians, heads of families, who resided in Greenwood Le Flore’s district, in the territory occupied by the Choctaws in 1830, and who had land in cultivation, in exchange for which they were to receive stipulated tracts of land. The records referred to in no way relate to or show any compliance or attempted compliance on the part of the persons therein named with the provisions of article 14 of the treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek.

The commission therefore held that claimants were not, entitled to enrollment and rendered a decision denying them.

October 17, 1902. The decision of the commission was approved by the Secretary.


Counsel for claimants respectfully submit that these people are Indians, children of recognized Indians, and born in the Choctaw Nation; that this made them citizens of the nation, and that no admission by an Indian council could add to their rights; that they should not be deprived of their rights because of an act of Congress conceived by attorneys for the nations who were being paid per head for all persons they could keep off the roll and enacted by Congress without any Member of Congress in the House or Senate realizing its effects-the act of May 31, 1900.

The following persons are entitled to enrollment: Robert L. Vaughn, Edna A. Vaughn, Arthur C. Vaughn, Walter A. Vaughn, Victor K. Vaughn, Ore M. Vaughn, Mary J. Vaughn, Robert Vaughn, Annie M. Duncan, Jesse Duncan, Robert L. Duncan, Mary E. Duncan.

Respectfully submitted.
Walter S. Field, Attorney for Claimants.


Department Of The Interior. Commission to the Five Civilized Tribes.

In the matter of the application of Robert L. Vaughn et al. for identification as Mississippi Choctaws, consolidating the applications of Robert L. Vaughn et al., M. C. R. 340, and Anna M. Duncan et al., M. C. II. 330.

Decision

It appears from the record herein that applications for identification as Mississippi Choctaws were made to this commission by Robert L. Vaughn, for himself and his seven minor children, Edna A., Arthur C., Walter A., Victor K., Ora M., Mary J., and Robert Vaughn, and Anna M. Duncan, for herself and her three minor children, Jesse, Robert L., and Mary E. Duncan, and it also appears that application for identification as an Intermarried Mississippi Choctaw was made to this commission by Robert L. Vaughn for his wife, Ruth Vaughn, under the following provision of the act of Congress approved June 28, 1898 (30 Stats.. 495):

“Said commission shall have authority to determine the identity of Choctaw Indians claiming rights in the Choctaw lands under article fourteen of the treaty between the United States and the Choctaw Nation concluded September twenty-seventh, eighteen hundred and thirty, and to that end may administer oaths, examine witnesses, and perform all other nets necessary thereto, and make report to tho Secretary of the Interior.”

It also appears that all of said applicants claim rights in the Choctaw lands under article 14 of the treaty between the United States and the Choctaw Nation concluded September 27, 1830, by reason of being descendants of one Alexander Vaughn, who is alleged to have been a full-blood Choctaw and to have resided in the old Choctaw Nation, States of Mississippi and Alabama, in 1830.

It further appears from the evidence submitted in support of said applications and from the records in the possession of the commission that no one of said applicants has ever been enrolled as a member of the Choctaw Tribe by the Choctaw tribal authorities, or admitted to Choctaw citizenship by a duly constituted court or committee of the Choctaw Nation, or by the Commission to the Five Civilized Tribes, or by a decree of the United States court in Indian Territory under the provisions of the act of Congress approved June 10, 1896 (29 Stats., 321).

From the records in the possession of the commission It Is found that the name of one Alexander Vaughn appears upon page 27, volume 1, Court of Claims Record, The Choctaw Nation v. The United States, in a list of Choctaw Indians whose reservations were sold under article 19 of the treaty of 1830.

It is further found that the name of one Alexander Vaughn appears on page 116 of volume 7, American State Papers, Public Lands, in a list of names of Choctaw Indians, heads of families, who resided in Greenwood Le Flore’s district, in the territory occupied by the Choctaw Indians in 1830 and who had land in cultivation, in exchange for which they were to receive stipulated tracts of land. The records referred to in no way relate to or show any compliance or attempted compliance on the part of the persons therein named with the provisions of article 14 of the treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek.

It does not appear from the testimony and evidence offered in support of said applications, or from the records In the possession of the commission relating to persons who complied, or attempted to comply, with the provisions of said article 14 of the treaty of 1830 and to persons who heretofore were claimants thereunder that the said Alexander Vaughn, or an ancestor less remote, or any of the applicants herein signified (in person or by proxy) to Col. William Ward, Indian agent, Choctaw agency, an intention to comply with the provisions of said article 14 of the treaty of 1830 or presented a claim to rights thereunder to either of the commissions authorized to adjudicate such claims by the acts of Congress approved March 3, 1837 (5 State., ISO), and August 23, 1842 (5 Stats., 513):

It is therefore the opinion of this commission that the evidence herein is Insufficient to determine the identity of Robert L. Vaughn, Edna A. Vaughn, Arthur C. Vaughn, Walter A. Vaughn, Victor K. Vaughn, Ora M. Vaughn, Mary J. Vaughn, Robert Vaughn, Anna M. Duncan, Jesse Duncan, Robert L. Duncan, and Mary E. Duncan as Choctaw Indians entitled to rights in the Choctaw lands under the provisions of said article 14 of the treaty of 1830, and that the applications for their Identification as such should be refused, and it is so ordered.

It is the further opinion of this commission that under the provisions of law above quoted no person is entitled to identification as a Mississippi Choctaw by intermarriage, and that the application made by Robert L. Vaughn for the Identification of his wife, Ruth Vaughn, as an Intermarried Mississippi Choctaw should therefore be refused, and it is so ordered.

The Commission to the Five Civilized Tribes:

Tams Bixby, Acting Chairman
T. B. Needles, Commissioner
C. R. Breckenridge, Commissioner

Muskogee, Ind. T., July 21, 1902


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