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Genealogical and Family History of Vermont

Hiram Charlton took on the publication of the Genealogical and Family History of the State of Vermont for Lewis Publishing. In it, he enlisted the assistance of living residents of the state in providing biographical and genealogical details about their family, and then he published all 1104 family histories in two distinct volumes.

People and Buildings of the Choctaw Nation

The missionaries found the precepts of the Choctaw’s to be moral; and also that they respected old age, and kept fresh in memory the wise councils of their; fathers, whose lessons of wisdom the experience of the past, taught their youthful minds to look upward, and whose teachings they did not forget in their mature years. Their tenderness to and watchful care of the aged and infirm was truly remarkable; they looked upon home and regarded their country as sacred institutions, and in the defense of which they freely staked their lives; they also inculcated a high regard for parents, and were always courteous by instinct as well as by teaching; they held in high veneration the names of the wise, the good, and the brave of their ancestors, and from their sentiment toward the dead grew sweet flowers in the heart. They believed that integrity alone was worthy of station, and that promotion should rest on capacity and faithfulness; they also had swift and sure methods of dealing with the incorrigible, official or private; nor were they impatient of the slow processes of the years but knew how to wait in faith and contentment; and if they were not as progressive, as our opinion demands in its rush for gain and pompous show, they had at least conquered the secret of National and individual steadfastness. Today we are a prodigal and wasteful people; the Indians are frugal and economical. In 14 months after the location of the mission at Elliot by the indefatigable perseverance of Mr. Kingsbury, a sufficiency of houses were erected, a school was opened, and...

Missionaries Among the Choctaw

In 1832, at Hebron, the home of the missionary, Calvin Cushman and his family, was the place appointed for the assembling of all the Choctaws in that district preparatory to their exodus from their ancient domains to a place they knew not where; but toward the setting sun as arbitrary power had decreed. Sad and mournful indeed was their gathering together helpless and hopeless under the hand of a human power that knew no justice or mercy. I was an eyewitness to that scene of despairing woe and heard their sad refrain. I frequently visited their encampment and strolled from one part of it to another; while from every part of their wide extended camp, as I walked, gazed and wondered at the weird appearance of the scene, there came, borne upon the morn and evening breeze from every point of the vast encampment, faintly, yet distinctly, the plaintive sounds of weeping rising and falling in one strangely sad and melancholy chorus, then dying away in a last, long drawn wail. It was the Availing of the Choctaw women even as that of Rachel for her children. Around in different groups they sat with their children from whose quivering lips sobs and moans came in subdued unison; now, in wild concert united, their cries quivered and throbbed as they rose and fell on the night air, then dying away in a pathetic wail proclaiming, in language not to be misunderstood, the pressure of the anguish that was crushing their souls hidden from human eyes and told only to the night. Truly, their grief was so deep, so overpowering, that even...

Choctaws and their Beliefs about the Great Flood

The Choctaws, at the time of their earliest acquaintance with the European races, possessed, in conjunction with all their race of the North American Continent, a vague, but to a great extent, correct knowledge of the Oka Falama, “The returning waters,” as they termed it The Flood. The Rev. Cyrus Byington related a little incident, as one out of many interesting and pleasing ones that frequently occurred when traveling through their country from one point to another in the discharge of his ministerial duties, over seventy years ago. At one time he found night fast approaching without any visible prospect of finding a place of shelter for the night, safe from the denizens of the wilderness through which his devious path was leading him. Then and there roads were unknown and paths alone led the traveler from place to place. Soon, however, he discovered a humble cabin a few hundred yards distant, directly to which the little path was leading him, and which he readily recognized as the home of a Choctaw hunter. Several little children were engaged in their juvenile sports near the house, who upon seeing the white stranger approaching, made a precipitate retreat into the house. The mother hastened to the door to learn, the cause of the alarm saw, gazed a moment, and then as suddenly disappeared. As Mr. Byington rode up, he observed an Indian man sitting before the door, whose appearance betokened his experience in the vicissitudes of life to have reached four score years or more, who cheerfully extended the hospitality of his humble home to the solitary and wayworn stranger. But nothing...

Death of Cyrus Kingsbury

Early in the year 1820, an English traveler from Liverpool, named Adam Hodgson, who had heard of the Elliot mission when at home, visited the mission, though he had to turn from his main route of travel the distance of sixty miles. He, at one time on his sixty miles route, employed a Choctaw to conduct him ten or twelve miles on his new way, which he did, then received his pay and left him to finish his journey alone. Of this Choctaw guide Mr. Hodgson, as an example of noble benevolence and faithful trust, states: “After going about a mile, where we became confused in regard to the correct direction and were halting upon two opinions, my guide suddenly and unexpectedly appeared at my side, and pointed in the direction I should go, as he could not talk English. I thanked him and again we parted; but again becoming confused by a diverging path, half a mile distant, as suddenly and unexpectedly, appeared again my guide who had still been, silently and unobserved, watching my steps. Again he set me right, and made signs that my course lay directly toward the sun, and then disappeared;” and by carefully keeping the course as directed by the Choctaw, Mr. Hodgson safely reached the mission, where he was warmly received by the missionaries. Yet the Indian is still called a savage, who “cannot be educated out of his savagery.” God pity such ignorance, and forgive their duplicity in assuming to be enlightened Christians, and yet seek to hand down to the latest posterity a part of God’s created Intelligences the Red...

The Meeting of Folsom and Nittakachih

When the council, convened for the adjustment and final distribution of the annuity, adjourned in such confusion, together with the animosity manifested and openly expressed by both contending parties the one toward the other, (a similar scene never before witnessed in a Choctaw council) I feared the consequences that I was apprehensive would follow; but hoped that the conflicting opinions then agitating my people would be harmonized upon calm reflection and the adoption of wise and judicious measures. But when I ascertained that Nittakachih and Amosholihubih were truly assembling their warriors, I began to view the matter in its true and proper light. I knew those two chiefs too well to longer doubt the full interpretations of their designs as set forth in their actions; for they both were men who indulged not in meaningless parade, or delighted in empty display. Inevitable war kindred against kindred and brother against brother with all its horrors and irreparable consequences now seemed to stare me in the face, with no alternative but to speedily prepare to meet it; therefore Le Flore and myself, after due deliberation, resolved, if we must fight, to confine the fighting as much as possible within Amosholihubih’s and Nittakachih’s own districts. We at once took up our line of march south toward Demopolis, which was in the district of Amosholihubih, and where they had assembled their warriors. At the termination of our second days march, we ascertained through our scouts, that Amosholihubih and Nittakachih were also advancing with their warriors to meet us. In vain I still sought for some pacific measures that might be advanced to stop...

Memoirs of Nathaniel Folsom

I will here present to the reader the memoirs of Nathaniel Folsom the oldest of the three brothers who cast their lot in their morning” of life among” the Choctaws, and became the fathers of the Folsom House in the Choctaw Nation, as related by himself to the missionary, Rev. Cyrus Byington, June, 1823, and furnished me by his grand-daughter Czarena Folsom, now Mrs. Rabb. “I was born in North Carolina, Rowan County, May 17th, 1756. My father was born in Massachusetts or Connecticut. My mother was born in New Jersey. My parents moved to Georgia, and there my father sent me to school about six months, during which time I learned to read and write. My mother taught me to read and spell at home. My father had a great desire to go to Mississippi to get money; they said money grew on bushes! We got off and came into the Choctaw Nation. The whole family came; we hired an Indian pilot who led us through the Nation to Pearl River, where we met three of our neighbors who were re turning on account of sickness. This alarmed my father, who then determined to return to North Carolina. We came back into the Nation to Mr. Welch’s, on Bok Tuklo (Two Creeks), the father of Mr. Nail. At this time I was about 19 years of age. At that place we parted. My father knocked “me down”. I arose and told him I would quit him, and did so by walking straight off before his face. I do not remember what I did, but I always thought I...

Tunapinachuffa

The first conversion among the full blooded Choctaws was that of an aged man, who lived near Col. David Folsom, chief of the Choctaws, named Tun-a pin a-chuf-fa, (Our one weaver) hitherto as ignorant of the principles of the religion of Jesus Christ as it is possible to conceive. He manifested an interest in the subject of religion about six months before any other of his people in the neighborhood, and soon began to speak publicly in religious meetings, and gave evidence, by his daily walk and conversation, of a happy and glorious change, to the astonishment of his people, who could not comprehend the mystery. The old man, but now a new one, lived the life of a true and devoted Christian the few remaining years of, his life, and then died leaving bright evidence of having died the death of the righteous. When he was received into the church, he was baptized and given the name of one of the missionaries, viz.: William Hooper, by his own request, to whom Mr. Hooper had endeared himself by many acts of kindness conferred upon the aged and appreciative Choctaw. Shortly after he professed religion, he dictated a letter to Col. David Folsom, his nephew, which was written and translated into English by Mr. Loring Williams, of which the following is a copy: “Ai-Ik-Hum-A; Jan. 30, 1828,” (A place of learning.) “Brother; Long time had we been as people in a storm which threatened destruction, until the missionaries came to our land; but now we are permitted to hear the blessed Gospel of truth. You, our brother and chief, found for...

The Discovery Of This Continent, it’s Results To The Natives

In the year 1470, there lived in Lisbon, a town in Portugal, a man by the name of Christopher Columbus, who there married Dona Felipa, the daughter of Bartolome Monis De Palestrello, an Italian (then deceased), who had arisen to great celebrity as a navigator. Dona Felipa was the idol of her doting father, and often accompanied him in his many voyages, in which she soon equally shared with him his love of adventure, and thus became to him a treasure indeed not only as a companion but as a helper; for she drew his maps and geographical charts, and also wrote, at his dictation, his journals concerning his voyages. Shortly after the marriage of Columbus and Felipa at Lisbon, they moved to the island of Porto Santo which her father had colonized and was governor at the time of his death, and settled on a large landed estate which belonged to Palestrello, and which he had bequeathed to Felipa together with all his journals and papers. In that home of retirement and peace the young husband and wife lived in connubial bliss for many years. How could it be otherwise, since each had found in the other a congenial spirit, full of adventurous explorations, but which all others regarded as visionary follies? They read together and talked over the journals and papers of Bartolomeo, during which Felipa also entertained Columbus with accounts of her own voyages with her father, together with his opinions and those of other navigators of that age his friends and companions of a possible country that might be discovered in the distant West, and the...

Choctaw Indian Bands, Gens and Clans

The Choctaws were divided into various clans called Iksa, established and regulated upon principles of unity, fidelity and charity. They held this to be a necessary and important custom to be sacredly kept and inviolably observed by them at all times and under all circumstances, and never to be forgotten. If one should be found in a strange place far from home, and should be placed in a situation to need assistance, all he had to do was to give the necessary intimation of his membership of one of those Iksas, and upon the mention of the name of that clan he would never fail to meet one or more, who would immediately extend to him the hand of friendship.

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