Location: Cherokee County OK

Biographical Sketch of Austin Reagan

(See Foreman) –Austin Greely, son of Meriweather G. and Lydia A. (Hicks) Reagan, born September 25, 1883, educated in Male Seminary from which he graduated May 29, 1907. He married at Tahlequah, September 17, 1917, Grace daughter of John Robert and Nancy J. Wade, born May 18, 1896. They are the parents of: Knowlton, born March 30, 1918; Ruthben, born December 30, 1919, and the twins Woodrow and Warren Reagan, born March 4, 1921 Mr. Regan is a farmer and school teacher in Cherokee County,...

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Biographical Sketch of Mrs. William D. Renfro

(See Riley).-—Betty Sutherlin born September 19, 1897, educated at the Cherokee Orphan Asylum. Married December 28, 1897 to William David, Son of Dave K. and Alef (Tillman) Renfro, born August 29, 1870 in Brown County, Texas. They are the parents of: William David, born January 26, 1900 and is at present in the 1922 class in the University of Oklahoma, where he is a member of the Alpha Kappa Psi fraternity; Elza Tillman, born April 3, 1902, is a student in Tulsa University and a Phi Delta Theta; Alef Adelaide, born February 23, 1904, and Ima Jean Renfro, born October 30, 1907. Adelaide McGuilliams Rice Brady married in November 1878 Richard Lafayette Southerlin, born May 2, 1841, in Bryan County, Kentucky. He served during the Civil War in the First Tennessee Cavalry, Confederate Army. Mrs. Southerlin died February 17, 1887, and he died in 1889. They were the parents of Mrs. William D. Renfro. Mr. Renfro is a retired...

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Biographical Sketch of Mrs. P. W. Samuel

(See Grant and Ghigau)—Florence Wilson McSpadden, born June 26, 1873 at Tahlequah. Educated at the Tahlequah City Schools and graduated from Female Seminary, June 23, 1892. Married at Tahlequah in January 1895 to Philip Wharton Samuel born September 19, 1867 in Galloway County, Missouri and graduated from Spaulding’s Business College May 2, 1888. They are the parents of Vance Ray, born November 21, 1897 and Maurine Sam­uel born October 22, 1902. Philip Wharton Samuel is very prominent in the banking circles of the State, having been Cashier of the First National Bank at Pryor, President of First State Bank of Vinita for seven years, Cashier and late President of the Oklahoma State of Muskogee, which was changed under his management to the Exchange National Bank. Mrs. Samuel is a member of the Methodist Church and was a tireless worker in World War Auxiliary activities. Janies Walker, son of Reverend J. K. B. McSpadden, was born October 25, 1848 in Alabama, married April 18, 1872 Annie, daughter of Dr. Jeter Lynch and Mary Jane (Taylor) Thompson born May 4, 1852 in Delaware District, Cherokee Nation. They were the parents of Florence Wilson; Richard Vance, Mary Jane, who married Thomas R. Crookshank and James Walker McSpadden, Jr. Mrs. Samuel’s grandfather, Rev. Thomas K. B. McSpadden joined the Methodist In­dian Conference October 30, 1879. He was from the Van Buren circuit of...

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Biographical Sketch of Rufus Hendricks

(See Hendricks)- Rufus, son of Thomas and Nellie Hendricks was born October 25, 1869, educated in the Cherokee National schools. Married at Tahlequah December 22, 1895 to Susie, daughter of Joseph and Almeda Stanley, born March 22, 1876 in Jasper County, Missouri. They are the parents of: Joseph born September 29, 1896; James, born November 12, 1897; Willdie, born January 6, 1899; Marcus A. born July 26, 1901; Harvey, born March 29, 1903; Edna, born Aug­ust 2, 1906; Herchell, born July 13, 1908; Herbert, born April 17, 1910; Ethel, born November 4, 1911; Iva, born May 16, 1913; Elva born November 3, 1915, and Dolora, born January 4, 917. Mr. Hendricks is one of the representative farmers of his community and has been a member of the district school board for seven...

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Biographical Sketch of Richard W. King

(Ward)—Richard Willey, son of Judge Benjamin Cooper and Abbie (Kadle) King was born August 1, 1871, educated at Tahlequah and Male Seminary. Married July 20, 1890 Melvin Holland, born May 26, 1871. They were the parents of Benjamin Cooper born December 23, 1892, married at Tahlequah August 30, 1912 to Peggy Balleau born in 1894. Has one son, Richard Chester King, born Nov. 15, 1913. Clifford Willey, born Dec. 27, 1902 and John King, born April 1, 1910. Benjamin Cooper King was elected Judge of Tahlequah District, August 5, 1889-Richard Willey King was elected County Commissioner of the Third District of Cher­okee County on November 5, 1912. He is an Odd Fellow and Knight of Pythias. Benjamin Cooper King, Jr., is a Mason and Odd...

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Slave Narrative of Eliza Whitmire

Person Interviewed: Eliza Whitmire Location: Vinita, Oklahoma Date of Birth: 1833 Age: 102 My name is Eliza Whitmire. I live on a farm, near Estella, where I settled shortly after the Civil War and where I have lived ever since. I was born in slavery in the state of Georgia, my parents having belonged to a Cherokee Indian of the name of George Sanders, who owned a large plantation in the old Cherokee Nation, in Georgia. He also owned a large number of slaves but I was too young to remember how many he owned. I do not know the exact date of my birth, although my mother told me I was about five years old when President Andrew Jackson ordered General Scott to proceed to the Cherokee country, in Georgia, with two thousand troops and remove the Cherokees by force to the Indian Territory. This bunch of Indians were called the Eastern Emigrants. The Old Settler Cherokees had moved themselves in 1835 when the order was first given to the Cherokees to move out. The weeks that followed General Scott’s order to remove the Cherokees were filled with horror and suffering for the unfortunate Cherokees and their slaves. The women and children were driven from their homes, sometimes with blows and close on the heels of the retreating Indians came greedy whites to pillage the Indians’ homes, drive...

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Slave Narrative of Johnson Thompson

Person Interviewed: Johnson Thompson Place of Birth: Texas Date of Birth: December 1853 Just about two weeks before the coming of Christmas Day in 1853, I was born on a plantation somewheres eight miles east of Bellview, Rusk County, Texas. One year later my sister Phyllis was born on the same place and we been together pretty much of the time ever since, and I reckon there’s only one thing that could separate us slave born children. Mammy and pappy belong to W.P. Thompson, mixed-blood Cherokee Indian, but before that pappy had been owned by three different masters; one was the rich Joe Vann who lived down at Webber Falls and another was Chief Lowery of the Cherokees. I had a brother named Harry who belonged to the Vann family at Tahlequah. There was a sister named Patsy; she died at Wagoner, Oklahoma. My mother was born ‘way back in the hills of the old Flint District of the Cherokee Nation; just about where Scraper, Okla., is now. My parents are both dead now seems like fifty, maybe sixty year ago. Mammy died in Texas, and when we left Rusk County after the Civil War, pappy took us children to the graveyard. We patted her grave and kissed the ground,telling her good-bye. Pappy is buried in the church yard on Four Mile branch. I don’t remember much about my...

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Slave Narrative of Victoria Taylor Thompson

Person Interviewed: Victoria Taylor Thompson Age: 80 My mother, Judy Taylor, named for her mistress, told me that I was born about three year before the war; that make me about 80 year old so they say down at the Indian Agency where my name is on the Cherokee rolls since all the land was give to the Indian families a long time ago. Father kept the name of ‘Doc’ Hayes, and my brother Coose was a Hayes too, but mother, Jude, Patsy, Bonaparte (Boney, we always called him), Lewis and me was always Taylors. Daddy was bought by the Taylors (Cherokee Indians); they made a trade for him with some hilly land, but he kept the name of Hayes even then. Like my mother, I was born on the Taylor place. They lived in Flint District, around the Caney settlement on Caney Creek. Lots of the Arkansas Cherokees settled around there long times before the Cherokees come here from the east, my mother said. The farm wasn’t very big, we was the only slaves on the place, and it was just a little ways from a hill everybody called Sugar Mountain, because it was covered with maple sugar trees, and an old Indian lived on the hillside, making maple sugar candy to sell and trade. Master Taylor’s house had three big rooms and a room for the loom,...

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Slave Narrative of Katie Rowe

Person Interviewed: Katie Rowe Location: Tulsa, Oklahoma Age: 88 I can set on de gallery, what de sunlight shine bright, and sew a powerful fine seam when my grandchillun wants a special purty dress for de school doings, but I ain’t worth much for nothing else I reckon. These same old eyes seen powerful lot of tribulations in my time, and when I shets ’em now I can see lots of l’ll chillun jest lak my grand-chillun, toting hoes bigger dan dey is, and dey pore little black hands and legs bleeding whar dey scratched by de brambledy weeds, and whar dey got whuppings ’cause dey didn’t git out all de work de overseer set out for ’em. I was one of dem little slave gals my own self, and I never seen nothing but work and tribulations till I was a grown up woman, jest about. De niggers had hard traveling on de plantation whar I was born and raised, ’cause old Master live in town and jest had de overseer on de place, but iffen he had lived out dar hisself I speck it been as bad, ’cause he was a hard driver his own self. He git biling mad when de Yankees have dat big battle at Pea Ridge and scatter de ‘Federates all down through our country all bleeding and tied up and hungry, and...

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Slave Narrative of Chaney Richardson

Person Interviewed: Chaney Richardson Location: Fort Gibson, Oklahoma Age: 90 I was born in the old Caney settlement southeast of Tahlequah on the banks of Caney Creek. Off to the north we could see the big old ridge of Sugar Mountain when the sun shine on him first thing in the morning when we all getting up. I didn’t know nothing else but some kind of war until I was a grown woman, because when I first can remember my old Master, Charley Rogers, was always on the lookout for somebody or other he was lined up against in the big feud. My master and all the rest of the folks was Cherokees, and they’d been killing each other off in the feud ever since long before I was borned, and jest because old Master have a big farm and three-four families of Negroes them other Cherokees keep on pestering his stuff all the time. Us children was always afeared to go any place less’n some of the grown folks was along. We didn’t know what we was a-feared of, but we heard the Master and Mistress keep talking ’bout “another Party killing” and we stuck close to the place. Old Mistress’ name was Nancy Rogers, but I was a orphan after I was a big girl and I called her “Aunt” and “Mamma” like I did when I...

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Slave Narrative of Nancy Rogers Bean

Person Interviewed: Nancy Rogers Bean Location: Hulbert, Oklahoma Place of Birth: Boggy Depot, Oklahoma Age: 82 I’m getting old and it’s easy to forget most of the happenings of slave days; anyway I was too little to know much about them, for my mammy told me I was born about six years before the war. My folks was on their way to Fort Gibson, and on the trip I was born at Boggy Depot, down in southern Oklahoma. There was a lot of us children; I got their names somewheres here. Yes, there was George, Sarah, Emma, Stella, Sylvia, Lucinda, Rose, Den, Pamp, Jeff, Austin, Jessie, Isaac and Andrew: we all lived in a one room log cabin on Master Rogers’ place not far from the old military road near Choteau. Mammy was raised around the Cherokee town of Tahlequah. I got my name from the Rogers, but I was loaned around to their relatives most of the time. I helped around the house for Bill McCracken, then I was with Cornelius and Carline Wright, and when I was freed my Mistress was a Mrs. O’Neal, wife of a officer at Fort Gibson. She treated me the best of all and gave me the first doll I ever had. It was a rag doll with charcoal eyes and red thread worked in for the mouth. She allowed me one...

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Slave Narrative of Phyllis Petite

Person Interviewed: Phyllis Petite Location: Fort Gibson, Oklahoma Place of Birth: Rusk County, Texas Age: 83 I was born in Rusk County, Texas, on a plantation about eight miles east of Belleview. There wasn’t no town where I was born, but they had a church. My mammy and pappy belonged to a part Cherokee named W. P. Thompson when I was born. He had kinfolks in the Cherokee Nation, and we all moved up here to a place on Fourteen-Mile Creek close to where Hulbert now is. ‘way before I was big enough to remember anything. Then, so I been told, old master Thompson sell my pappy and mammy and one of my baby brothers and me back to one of his neighbors in Texas name of John Harnage. Mammy’s name was Letitia Thompson and pappy’s was Riley Thompson. My little brother was named Johnson Thompson, but I had another brother sold to a Vann and he always call hisself Harry Vann. His Cherokee master lived on the Arkansas river close to Webber’s Falls and I never did know him until we was both grown. My only sister was Patsy and she was borned after slavery and died at Wagoner, Oklahoma. I can just remember when Master John Harnage took us to Texas. We went in a covered wagon with oxen and camped out all along the way. Mammy...

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Biographical Sketch of Mrs. Frank Alexander Billingslea

Billingslea (See Oobootsa, Ross, Sanders and Ghigau.)—Jeannette Starr was born February 16, 1862, in Tahlequah. She was educated in the Cherokee public schools and graduated from Female Seminary July 2, 1880. Married at Vinita April 1, 1885. Frank Alexander Billingslea, born August 9, t8Si, in Crawfordville, Taliaferro County, Ga. He died May 9, 1913. They were the parents of DollIe Willie, born at Vinita, August 21, 1887, and Joseph Billingslea, born July 17, 1891 in Vinita. Thomas, son of James and Lettie Boyd (Chambers) Starr, was born March 12, 1840, married August 20, 1860, Dollie Eunice, daughter of Anderson and Mary (Nave) Lowrey, born February 10, 1840. Thomas Starr died December 25, 1862. Jean­nette Starr was their only child. Frank Alexander Billingslea’s first wife, Joanna Gulls, a second cousin of Mrs. Jeannette Billingslea. Frank A. and Joanna (Gillis) Billingslea had three children; McLeod Edward, born October 25, 1 875; Frank Daley, born November 3, 1887; and Helen Estella Billingslea, born January, 1880, and married William Frank Pierce. Frank Alexander Billingslea was elected a member of the Council on August 3, 1890, without the solicitation of a single vote. Mrs. Billingslea belongs to the Methodist church and was very active as a special worker in the Red Cross service during the World war. Her son, Joseph, was in active...

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Biographical Sketch of Edwin Harley Barton

Barton, (See Grant, Downing, Oolootsa, Foreman and Ghigau)—Edwin Harley Barton, born Aug. 8, 1890 at Baptist in Going Snake District, educated at Pryor, Chelsea and Tahlequah; graduated from Sweeney’s Automobile School in Kansas City, Mo. Married November 4, 1911 Bonnie E. daughter of John B. and Rachael F. Heflin. Edwin H. and Bonnie E. Barton are the parents of Frances Mae Barton, born November 12, 1912. Mary Vans Lashey, born in 1862, married September 6, 1888 Frederick Spencer Barters, born September 8, 1851 in Piqua, Miami county, Ohio. He died April 2, 1921. They were the parents of Edwin Harley Barters, whose Cherokee name is Oonodet. He is an expert automobile mechanic and owns a Battery Service Station in Pryor wher6 he is a member of the Commercial Club; in religion he is a Baptist, and is a member of the I. O. O. F., Woodmen of the World and a...

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Biographical Sketch of Mrs. S. J. Burns

Burns, Mrs. S. J. (Etta) (See Duncan)—Etta Hitchcock born December 14, 1860 at Park Hill, Cherokee Nation. Educated at home. She married December 30, 1880 Samuel James Burns born March 15, 1851 in Lindsey, Canada. Samuel J. and Etta Burnis have one daughter, Lily Dimple Burns, born September 30, 1881. She graduated from Worchester Academy, Vinita on May 20, 1898. Married Marshall Crutchfield Stevens, born December 1, 1879. Samuel J. and Etta Burns located in Vinita in 1884 and opened a mercantile establishment which is still in existence. Mrs. Burns, whose Cherokee name is Si-hs-shi, affiliated with the Methodist church, the Delphians and Premier Worth While clubs and is a charter member of the Eastern Star Chapter and Past Matron of the same, a member of the White Shrine and Daughters of the American Revolutions. She was President of the local cemetery association at the time it was named Fairview. Etta H. Burns is the daughter of Isaac Brown Hitchcock, born, February 28, 1825 at Dwight Missions, Arkansas Cherokee Nation. He married February 8, 1857 Elizabeth Ann Duncan, born July 10, 1833. She graduated from Female Seminary in February 1856. She died October 4, 1886 and he died January 16, 1911. They were the parents of Timothy Browns, born May 19, 1858, Etta Smith and Irenaeus Duncan Hitchcock, born September 6, 1864 in Tabor, Iowa. Jacob Hitchcock, the grandfather...

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