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Important Men of the Choctaw Indians

The Choctaw Nation, from its earliest known history to the present time has, at different intervals, produced many great and good men; who, had they have had the advantages of education, would have lived upon the pages of history equally with those of earth’s illustrious great. The first of whom we have any historical account, is Tush-ka Lu-sa, (the heroic defender of Moma Bin-na, a Lodge for All corrupted first to Mobila, then to Mobile) who perished, with many thousands of his people, in that bloody tragedy of three and a half centuries ago, while de fending his ancient city against the Spaniards, nothing more however, has been handed down by which we can judge of his ability as a wise and judicious ruler, but the fact that De Soto found his Nation in a prosperous condition; his people dwelling in large and well fortified towns, comfortable houses, subsisting to a very large extent by the cultivation of the soil. But of the patriotism and undaunted bravery of Tush-ka Lusa, and his ability as a commander of his warriors, DeSoto had satisfactory proof at the battle of Momabinah. But so little of the history of those ancient Choctaws has escaped oblivion that in sketching a line of their history at such a distance of time we necessarily pass through un known fields so wide and diversified that it is like gliding lightly and swiftly over the numberless waves of the agitated ocean, and only touching here and there some of their highest tops; while, as we approach our own times, merely the outline of their history, if accurately drawn, would...

Dutch Johnnie

Several Choctaw companies joined Washington’s army during our Revolutionary war, and served during the entire war; some of them were at the battle of Cowpens, under General Morgan; others, at the battle of Stony Point, under General Wayne, and others, at the battle of Tilico Plains, under General Sullivan, sent by General Green to punish the Tories and northern Cherokees (at that time the only Cherokees hostile to the Americans) for the destruction of Fort Loudon, situated on the Tennessee river in the territories then of North Carolina, whom he overtook at Tilico Plains, engaged and routed, with great loss on the part of the stories and Cherokees, also securing the women and children whom they taken had prisoners in the fall of Fort Loudon, and devastating the country of the hostile Cherokees as he went, in driving them, (Tories and Cherokees) through Deep Creek Gap, in Cumberland mountains, into the now State of Kentucky; and there ending the pursuit, Sullivan returned and joined his command near Yorktown. It is said, those Cherokees never did return to their former homes, but became incorporated with other Indians in Kentucky; others, were under Washington at the capture of Yorktown, and witnessed the surrender of Cornwallis. An amusing incident was related to me when in the Choctaw Nation in 1888, in which a Choctaw scout, under General Sullivan, previous to the defeat of the Tories and Cherokees at Tilico Plains, was the chief hero. This scout, from his short and thickset form, was given the name Dutch Johnnie, by the soldiers. Dutch Johnnie was an uncompromising enemy to the hostile Cherokees, for the reason that a scouting party of theirs had killed his wife and only child; and in revenge he had sworn, as...

Gen. Anthony Wayne’s Campaign

In April 1792, General Anthony Wayne was appointed by the general government to take command of the Northwestern Army. On the 5th of the following November a hundred men from Kentucky, under Adair as captain, made a raid across the Ohio River into the Indians country, but the indefatigable Little Turtle and his band of heroes met him and, in a severe fight: defeated him, with heavy loss, and drove him back to his own. In the spring of 1793, during the arrangements that were being made for Wayne’s campaign, Congress sent commissioners to the Northwest Indians to negotiate a treaty on the basis of the treaty made at Fort Harmer in 1789. This treaty-making with the Northwest Indians was not a step with the view of civilizing the Indians and bringing them under the benign influences of Christianity, nor was the organization of Wayne’s army for the purpose of protecting them from the raids of the marauding companies of white marauders, robbers and thieves, who invaded there country whenever the desired; but for the accomplishment of a scheme for robbing the helpless Indians of their country and homes. The commissioners called a council of tap Indians to be held at the mouth of the Muskingum River. Now, it is a known fact, that the. Congress of the United States never did assemble any tribe or tribes of Indians upon the North American continent from 1776 to the present time, for the humane purpose of consulting with them upon measures relating to their civilization and Christianity. Never. But to rob and swindle them out of their country was the only...

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...

Narrative of the Captivity of Sergeant Lent Munson – Indian Captivities

Narrative of the captivity and escape of Sergeant Lent Munson, who fell into the hands of the Western Indians at the time of Lieut. Lowry’s defeat. As Lieut. Lowry and Ensign Boyd, with about one hundred men, were escorting two hundred and fifty pack horses with provisions from fort St. Clair to General Wayne’s camp, (six miles in advance of Fort Jefferson,) they were furiously assailed by about half their number of concealed Indians, and totally defeated. They had encamped four miles on their journey on the night of the 16th of October, 1793, and were sufficiently warned during the whole night of what they had to undergo at early dawn. However, no attack was made until the detachment was about ready to march on the morning of the 17th. At this juncture the Indians rushed upon them with great fury, and after a short but bloody engagement the whites were dispersed in every direction. In this onset Lieut. Lowry and Ensign Boyd both fell mortally wounded, and about twenty of their men were among the slain. The rest of this unfortunate escort, excepting eleven, who were taken prisoners, got back to Fort St. Clair. To the smallness of the number of the Indians is to be attributed the escape of any. Sergeant Munson was one of the eleven prisoners, and was hurried off with his companions towards the country of the Ottawas, to which nation of Indians this party belonged. They had not proceeded far when one of the prisoners, being but a boy, and weakly, was murdered and left on the way. The remaining ten were then...

Shawnee Indian Chiefs and Leaders

Big Jim Big Jim. The popular name of a noted full-blood Shawnee leader, known among his people as Wapameepto, “Gives light as he walks”. His English name was originally Dick Jim, corrupted into Big Jim. He was born on the Sabine Reservation, Texas, in 1834, and in 1872 became chief of the Kispicotha band, commonly known as Big Jim’s band of Absentee Shawnee. Big Jim was of illustrious lineage, his grandfather being Tecumseh and his father one of the signers of the “Sam Houston treaty” between the Cherokee and affiliated tribes and the Republic of Texas, February 23, 1836. He was probably the most conservative member of his tribe. In the full aboriginal belief that the earth was his mother and that she must not be wounded by tilling of the soil, he refused until the last to receive the allotments of land that had been forced upon his band in Oklahoma, and used every means to overcome the encroachments of civilization. For the purpose of finding a place where his people would be free from molestation, he went to Mexico in 1900, and while there was stricken with smallpox in August, and died. He was succeeded by his only son, Tonomo, who is now (1905) about 30 years of age. Chief Black Bob Black Bob. The chief of a Shawnee band, originally a part of the Hatha­wekela division of the Shawnee. About the year 1826 they separated from their kindred, then living in eastern Missouri on land granted to them about 1793 by Baron Carondelet, near Cape Girardeau, then in Spanish territory, and removed to Kansas, where, by treaty...

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