Tuesday, June 4, 2019

What Happened to the Catawba and Associated Bands in “Indian Territory”?

What Happened to the Catawba and Associated Bands in “Indian Territory”? 
I was so careful in creating this file in word format. I italicized some comments, indented for new paragraphs, and that all vanished when I copied and pasted this online. It always does that! Anyway, I thought it was important to try to document the treatment of the Catawba and Associated Bands who came to Oklahoma over 100 years ago. Someone needs to document this.

When I first started researching genealogy, I quickly realized I had to research history as well. One without the other defeats the purpose of “the one”. I had been researching the Cherokee and realized I should have researched the Catawba and Associated Bands as well. I learned a lot through the Saponitown Forum online. The Saponi were a band of the Yesah/Esaw people, the only surviving federally recognized group being the Catawba. I found my own family ties there. I was fascinated. That led me to Dr. Thomas Blumer, a well-known researcher of the Catawba. I was in touch with him for a couple of years. He was fascinated by my story as my family ived in all the places that it was written the Western Catawba had lived. I was interested in is story for the same reason. He has since passed on. But he told me of a failed effort to create a Catawba Tribe in Indian Territory, now known as Oklahoma. Now with the internet I can research so much more than I could before. Further research into this led me to discover Muriel Hazel Wright’s book, “A Guide to Indian Tribes in Oklahoma”, written in 1951. She speaks of all the tribes found in Oklahoma, both Indigenous and Immigrant. She had two pages on the Catawba. She spoke of a congressional effort in 1848 to get the Catawba to remove to Eastern Oklahoma. In 1853 a few Catawba were adopted by the Choctaw. She refers to another group called the “Western Catawba Indian Association” that tried in 1897 to get the Catawba in Oklahoma federally recognized, but this effort failed. Since my family had emigrated to Oklahoma in the 19th century, I kept researching into this subject. This report is a part of that research. To better understand it, a bit of history helps.

Explorers and Daemons
The Spanish arrived in Catawban lands in 1540 with De Soto’s expedition. They used Muscogeean translators and guides. Therefore these Eastern Soiuan peoples were initially given Muscogeean names. The Spanish wrote of the great city of Cofitachequi. Hudson said "The main town of Cofitachequi is thought to have been located at Silver Bluff, near Augusta, Georgia, on the South Carolina side of the Savannah River." We now know he was wrong. Blumer said “Today we know the site of Cofitachique as modern Camden, [South Carolina]. The Catawba did not abandon its ceremonial center until after the Treaty of Augusta in 1763.” Cofitachequi is a Muskogean word. Blumer says "In the language of the Catawban speakers who lived there, the place was called Yupaha." The Virginians called the early Siouan speakers “Yesah”. After many years, the South Carolina colony was developed. They referred to these people as the “Esaw” until the 1750s. Afterwards, the term “Catawba” was applied to them.

There were three daemons that utterly destroyed the Yesah people. FIRST was the Slave Trade, which ended about 1720. The book “The Indian Slave Trade” by Alan Gallay is a must read.  At one point (page 299) Gallay says, say “What is surprising about these figures is that Carolina exported more slaves than it imported before 1715.” But this tragedy is only part of the problem. The SECOND daemon was war, and it was related to the first. Traders made every tribe and band owe them money by selling them goods they couldn’t make themselves at high prices and buying Indian pelts and a tiny percent of what they were worth. When they couldn’t pay their debt, they were told that if they went to war with their natural enemy to gather slaves, the debt would be forgiven. So each tribe gathered slaves of their neighbors. At the end of the Yamassee war, which ended about 1717 – the Indian slave trade came to an end, as there just weren’t any slaves left to enslave any more. The THIRD demon were the Small Pox epidemics of 1697, 1738 (accompanying “The War of Jenkins Ear” between the English and the Spanish – look it up), 1759 (The French and Indian War), and during the Revolutionary War. As with slavery, warfare often accompanied the arrival of small pox. There were other epidemics with the arrival of the Spanish earlier. There may have been other small pox outbreaks,  but these are the ones I have found. By the time of the Revolutionary War, a once great nation was on the verge of extinction.

Remaining Bands
There were once many bands of Eastern Siouan people. But by the end of the Revolutionary War, there were just a few accounts remaining of the Pedee, the Cheraw, and the Saponi. If we look at a map of Siouan Bands before and after the Tuscarora and Yamassee wars, you will see many bands just ceased to exist afterwards. I suspect either the slave trade or disease, or both, brought an end to them. The main band remaining was the Catawba, and by this name all the surviving people were to become known. While mention of the Pedee, Cheraw and Saponi declined, so did the moral of the Catawba proper. Gradually the Cheraw and Pedee morphed into the state recognized Lumbee and other groups, and today there are several state recognized groups representing the Saponi as well. But only the Catawba still possessed lands as a tribal entity.

In the 1740s the government still considered the Catawba a Nation, as opposed to the Settlement Indians. Per Hudson, these settlement Indians were for the most part, composed of Indian Nations that were quickly on the road to extinction, passing first by the way of assimilation. He says; “The settlement Indians consisted of Cheraws (Sara), Uchee's (Yuchi), Pedees, Notchees (Natchez), Cape Fear and others.” Governor James Glenn stated in 1746 the Catawba had about 300 warriors. In 1743 Adair estimates the Catawba had about 400 fighting men. Adair also says the Catawba Nation consists of over 20 dialects, and he lists a few of them – Katabhaw, Wateree, Eeno, Chewah, Chowan, Cangaree, Nachee (Natchez), Yamassee, Coosah, etc. There is also a map showing a band of the Chickasaw living amongst them.

The Natchez came from the Mississippi River and were a Muscogeean group. The "Coosah" are Creek, and the Chowan are Algonquin. It was written (“A Guide to Cherokee Documents in Foreign Archives” -- ?I think p. 215?) of the Yamassee that “they spoke the same language as the lower Cherokee”. I’ve heard that the word “Yamassee” is of Muscogeean origin. When it was written that some of these "dialects" couldn't understand each other, that was DEFINITELY true.

In 1948 there was a report created by the Smithsonian entitled “Surviving Indian Groups East of the Mississippi”. It mentions several Eastern Siouan groups. It mentions just about every group that is now state recognized in both Carolinas as well as the Melungeons. We (the Melungeons) are the only group on that 1948 list that never became state recognized.

But this blog entry is not about state recognition. It is about what happened to those who migrated to the Indian Territory, to Oklahoma. The next part of this report is about those of us with Catawban roots who came to Arkansas and Oklahoma.

Three Migrations  
Please know I am usually discussing events for which I have found documentation. If I haven’t found the primary source, I will mention the secondary source. If I fail to do that, tell me in the comment section below the blog entry.

Early Western Migration 
The first migrations I have found are of a few Melungeon families -- provided the “Lungeons” and “Melungeons” are one and the same.

In 2010 a DNA project was started to try to determine the origin of the Melungeon people. They discovered a reference to “Lungeons” in Baxter County, Arkansas, from 1810 http://www.jogg.info/pages/72/files/Estes.htm; Melungeons, A Multiethnic Population, Received:  July 2011; accepted Dec 2011; Roberta J. Estes, Jack H. Goins, Penny Ferguson, Janet Lewis Crain, where they uncovered the following reference -- "History of Baxter County 1873 - 1973" Centennial 1973 edition; Mary Ann Messick. Hardback, 506 pages. Published by the Mountain Home Chamber of Commerce.

The author speaks of four “Lungen” men moving to Baxter County, Arkansas with him from Hawkins County, Tennessee, to Baxter County, Arkansas. He leaves then returns to Arkansas in 1819. by the time he moved to Arkansas for good, it states that his former slaves and the "Lungeon" men had died and most of their families had moved west with the Indians." These Indians are called “Quapaw”. The Quapaw, along with the larger Osage tribe from Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma, are a Siouan tribe, and they are also from Arkansas.

I also have Melungeon ancestors who were in Arkansas at that time just off of the White River. They had lived in Scott County, Virginia. When researchers talk about the earliest mention of “Melungeons” in any historic document, they usually refer to the church minutes of the Stoney Creek Primitive Baptist Church. My ancestors have our surnames plastered all over those minutes. We attended that church before moving to Arkansas. In Arkansas, my family helped organize the first lasting church in Arkansas Territory in 1815, along and near the White River. The Arkansas River was the southern border of the Cherokee Nation in Arkansas. The White River was its Eastern border. While the Methodist Church was established in 1815, the better-known Dwight Mission (Presbyterian) along the Arkansas River wasn’t established until 1818. Two Wayland boys served at Ft. Gibson in 1832 as members of “Beans Rangers”, said to have been some of the first troops to serve at Fort Gibson. They had a cousin, my direct ancestor, Sarah Ann Wayland, who married Joseph Richey, who also served at Fort Gibson, but a decade after the Wayland boys served there. Fort Gibson is in Oklahoma, then known as “Indian Territory”.

In 1834, Hosea Morgan wrote a letter and said he was Catawba Indian. He was from Arkansas but said he desired to live in the Cherokee Nation. He was given a flat denial – NO! They said he looked Spanish but he said he was Catawba Indian. Remember most of the bands associated historically with the Catawba had been largely assimilated by the time of the French and Indian War 1756-1763 or the Revolution two decades later. There are records of Catawba serving in both conflicts. They were becoming more mixed-blood each generation. Unless they wanted to marry their cousins (and there were tribal taboos against that) they married either local Whites or Blacks.

Go here -- https://www.galileo.usg.edu/ . Log on as a guest and scroll dowm to “86. Native American Documents” and click on there. If you search for appropriate key words you will find the document below.

Aquohee Dist Apr. 3. 1834, To the Gentlemen of the Delegation.  Gentlemen. I take the liberty to inform you that Hosea Morgan who kept my mill has had the field and houses assessed to him as an emigrant to the Arkansas. And Major Curry Gave the good will of it to a White man named Roland Terry. I waited on Major Curry and stated the case to him and I had many witnesses Present to prove my right to the place and that the man who had the place assessed was no Citizen of the Nation nor had any right of claim whatever to enroll as a Cherokee. The old man is supposed to be a Spaniard but calls himself a Catawba Indian. His wife is said to be Negro. John Smith his X mark Test -- E Jones

We also have the following;

We the undersigned certify that a man named Hosea Morgan Having the appearance of a Spaniard but representing himself to be a Catawba Indian having spent many years among the Spaniards and having with him a Negro family, came into this District six or seven years ago or there abouts.

On his first arrival he applied to the Council for permission to reside in the Nation as a Citizen but was refused About two years ago Mr. Smith obtained a permit for him to attend his mill. But he has never made any pretentions to have any right or title to land or Citizenship in the Nation till he was received as an emigrant to the Arkansas.

Now we respectfully but earnestly protest against, persons having no Cherokee blood and possessing no sort of title in our country being allowed to alienate portions of the land in this way which we conceive to be utterly unlawful for our own acknowledged citizens to do.

Signed on behalf of a full meeting of the Citizens of the Dist.
Test. -- Situagi his X mark, Sweetwater his X mark, Peter his X mark

These are three documents or stories of persons of families possessing Catawban blood in Indian Territory, even before the forced removal of Eastern Emigrant Tribes.

Middle Westward Migration 
We have a second wave of westward migration of Catawban peoples starting with the 1840 treaty.

The Treaty of Nation's Ford, 1840
By 1840, the Seminole, Creek, Choctaw, Chickasaw and Cherokee had all been removed from the American Southeastern states. Only few isolated pockets of mixed-bloods remained in the southeastern region of the nation remained from these tribes. But there were other mixed bloods that remained East of the Mississippi that had been forgotten about. Many of these were those who came to be known as Catawban’s. They were living in regions of the country where the state recognized tribes in Virginia and the Carolinas exist today. There was a time when they wanted these people removed, as well, to Oklahoma. When the state of South Carolina signed a treaty to remove the Catawba, they thought only of the Catawba Nation that still existed as a small tribe in that state. They didn’t consider their relatives, the Saponi, Cheraw and Pedee that still lived nearby. So the Treaty of Nations Ford was really intended to remove only the Catawba proper, and not the assimilated satellite bands. There were three articles to this treaty. Remember this was a treaty between the State of South Carolina and the Catawba Nation. The United States government had nothing to do with it. Here are those three articles.

First Article – The chiefs and headmen of the Catawba Indians for themselves and the Nation. Hereby agree to ??? sell and convey to the state of South Carolina all their right title and interest to their boundary of land lying on both sides of the Catawba River and situate in the Districts of York and Lancaster and which are represented in a plat of survey made by Samuel Wiley, and dated the twenty-second day of February. One thousand seven hundred and sixty-four, and now on file in the office of the secretary of state.

Second Article – The commissioners on their part engage in behalf of the state to furnish the Catawba Indians with a tract of land of the value of five thousand dollars, three hundred acres of which must be good, arable lands which must be purchased for their use in Haywood County, North Carolina, or in some other mountainous thinly populated region where the said Indians may desire.

Third Article – The commissioners further engage that the State shall pay the said Catawba Indians two thousand dollars annually for the term of ten years. The first payment to which is to be paid on their removal and on the first of January each and every year thereafter until the whole is paid.

So the first article states that the Catawba agreed to see their ancestral lands in South Carolina. For their part in the second article, the state of South Carolina agreed to purchase land valued in 1840 at $5,000 in Haywood County, North Carolina, for the Catawba to live on. In the third article the state of South Carolina agreed that they would pay the Catawba $2,000 per year for ten years. These payments would start once the Catawba vacated their lands.

Three things went wrong. i.] Haywood County, North Carolina is where the Cherokees of North Carolina still lived. ii.] The state of South Carolina never purchased any land for the Catawba in Haywood County, so there was no place for the people to move to in that county. The agreement stated that the yearly payments would start once the people had moved. It is my understanding that some Catawba moved in with the Cherokee, but that most just returned home. iii.] And thirdly, nobody told the North Carolinians the Catawba were coming to live in their state.

Although this treaty saw no migration to Oklahoma, it started the ball rolling in that direction. There was another agreement in 1948 that did that. This time it was with the Federal Government

The Indian Appropriation Act of 1848
I found very little on line about any “Indian Appropriation Act of 1848. This is all I came across; “Appropriation for the Indian Department. An act making appropriations for the current and contingent expenses of the Indian Department, and for fulfilling treaty stipulations with various Indian Tribes for the year ending June 30th, 1849, and for other purposes, July 28th, 1848, ch 118; 252 – and this document had only 208 pages. . . . so  . . .

I don’t know much about the Indian Appropriate Act of 1848. I can’t find a reference to it online. However Chapman Milling states in “Red Carolinians”, p 257, the following (first speaking of the 1840 treaty with South Carolina);

“The Indians removed themselves in small parties to North Carolina joining the Eastern Cherokee. But North Carolina refused to sell a reservation for their use . . . “ Milling then states most of them were back on their own lands within 18 months. He then states; “By the Indian Appropriation Act of 1848, $5,000 was set aside for the removal of the Catawba Indians now in the limits of the state of North Carolina to the Indian Country west of the Mississippi, with the consent of said tribe.”

So later in 1848 some of the Catawba tried to come to Indian Territory per the U. S. government supplying money for that purpose at that time. Brown writes in “The Catawba Indians”, p. 323 “On July 29, 1848 the 73rd Congress appropriated $5,000 to defray the expense of the move [to Indian Territory].” Chief James Kegg wrote a letter to President James Polk at that time and said there were 42 Catawba families who wanted to use that appropriation to move west. He said (p 324) “We humbly beg his Excellency the President . . .to remove us west of the Miss[issippi] under the act of the late Congress.” Still on page 324, Brown writes, “Whether the President ever saw the letter is problematical."

The Cherokee and Chickasaw say NO
In the next paragraph Brown writes that the Cherokee were asked if the Catawba could live amongst them. Brown writes; “The answer from John Ross and the Cherokee counsel was a firm NO. But before the reply was received, the Catawba themselves expressed a preference for living among the Western Chickasaws . . . [who] at one time had invited the Catawba to settle amongst them. Government representatives promptly opened up negotiations with the Chickasaws among whom – the agent was told, some of the Catawba’s descendants were already settled.” It continues to say: “The principal men of the tribe assured the agent that the Catawba would be welcome, but only the council had the right to invite them, officially. But when a Chickasaw Counsel meeting was held in February of 1849, the Catawba proposal was voted down. This change of sentiment was attributed to the sudden death of old Chief Albertson, a strong advocate of the Catawba’s.”

A Few are adopted by the Choctaw, and Creek
Murial Hazel Wright, herself a Choctaw and a granddaughter of a former Principle Chirf of of the Choctaw, wrote a book intitled “A Guide to the Indian Tribes of Oklahoma”. In it, she devotes about two pages to the Catawba. She states; In October 1848, William Morrison, chief of a band of Catawba living at Quallatown, Haywood County, North Carolina, addressed a letter to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs asking for the appointment of a superintendent to remove his people to the Indian Territory . . . These people expressed their preference for settlement among the Chickasaw . . .”

In an 1897 congressional document speaking about the Catawban people who came to Oklahoma, there is a little section on the history of this attempt. It supplies the following information about events that transpired in 1848. It states; “Catawba Indians – For the removal of the Catawba Tribe of Indians now in the limits of the State of North Carolina to the Indian Country west of the Mississippi, with the consent of said tribe, under the direction of the President of the United States, a sum not exceeding $5,000: provided no portion of this sum shall be expended for the purpose of removing said Indians until the President shall first obtain a home for them. Amongst some of the tribes west of the Mississippi River, with their consent, and without any charge upon the government.”

In a letter dated November 13th, 1848, John C. Mullay, a clerk in this office, forwarded a letter, dated Oct. 6, 1848, from one George T. Mason, enclosing a request by the Chief of the Catawbas, a memorial of said tribe of Indians at Quallatown, Haywood County, N. C., dated Oct. 4, 1848, on file in this office (misc. M., 280), addressed to the President, signed by William Morrison, chief, and following heads of each Catawba family, viz., Phillip Kegg, Lewis Stevens, John Heart, John Scott, Franklin Kenty, Antony George, David Harris, Thomas Stevens, John Harris, Jesse Harris, Nancey George, Sally Harris, Polly Redhead, Patsey George, Harriet Stevens, Betsy Heart, Cynthia Kegg, Patsy George, Jr., Mary Ayres, Margaret Ayres, Betsey Ayres, Susan Kegg, Eliza Kanty, Frankie Brown, Jinny Joe, Jenny Ayres, Rachel Brown, Easther Scott, Katy Joe, Sally Redhead, William George, Peggy Kanty, Rosa Ayres, Becky George, Polly Harris, Elizabeth Brown, Polly Harris [same name is listed twice], Mary Joe, Allen Harris, Mary Harris and James Kegg, comprising 42 persons, all of whom signed by mark, in the presence of Abram Sellers, George T. Mason., and John T. Gibson, requesting the appointment of a reliable and trustworthy business man to superintend their removal west.

We also have a report that several Catawba were adopted by the Choctaw. The Choctaw Council passed an act entitled “An Act Naturalizing Certain Persons Therein” which was approved November 3rd, 1893, (Choctaw Laws, 1869, p. 124) as follows, viz.:

Sec. 11. Be it enacted by the general counsel of the Choctaw Nation assembled, that William Morrison, Thomas Morrison, Sarah Jane Morrison, Molly Redhead, Betsey Heart, Rebeccah Heart, Phillip Keggo, and the infant child of Phillip Keggo, Rosey Ayres, Betsey Ayers, Julian Ayres, Mary Ayres, Sophonia Ayres, and Sally Ayres be, and they are hereby declared, naturalized citizens of the Choctaw Nation, invested with all the rights, privileges, and immunities of Naturalized citizens of the same.”

This same document says, “Although there is nothing in the act to show the nationality of these persons, you will see by a comparison of the names attached to the aforementioned memorial of the Catawbas, that they are the same persons. This opinion is corroborated by a subsequent Act of said council, approved November 12, 1856 (Choctaw Laws, 1869, p. 153) entitled, “An Act Giving Greater privileges to the Catawbas hereby naturalized).”

Sec. 18. Be it enacted by the General Counsel of the Choctaw Nation Assembled, that the Catawbas who were made citizens of this nation by a special act of Session XX, section11, of 1853, between the Choctaws and the government of the United States.”

So as a result of this Indian Appropriate Act of 1848, no lands were appropriated for the Western Catawba – but a small number of Catawba were adopted into the Choctaw Nation.

Notice the Choctaw approved this adoption in 1856. The Civil War was on the horizon, and this would end the second phrase of Catawban migration to Indian Territory. The Allotment Act would culminate in the last phrase of this migration.

There was a family mentioned in the “Indian Pioneer Papers” as having been Catawban mixed. The “Indian Pioneer Papers” were a Dust Bowl Era project whereby writers were paid to interview old-timers, elderly people who had ancestors who told about the history of their family in Indian Territory.

Willie Leblanche told a part of their story. The Leblanche and Gentry families had married into each other, and both are Catawban. The person who interviewed her said she was from Checotah, Oklahoma. Here are a few words she chose to tell;

“My grandfather was Elijah Hermigine Lerblanche. He was born in March, 1836, son of a Louisiana Frenchman and Vicay Genrty, who was daughter of Ellijay Gentry, a White man married to a full blood Catawba Indian. He came from Alabama to the Creek Nation at the age of 12.” Here is a man who was born in 1836 in Alabama and 12 years later moved to live in the Creek Nation. She means to be saying her ancestor moved from Alabama to the Creek Nation in Oklahoma 12 years later, in 1848. It continues to say they lived in Checotah. Remember the date, 1848, the same year some catawba came to Oklahoma hoping for the promise of lands to settle on. Well it goes on to say this family married into the Creek Nation, so they could obtain Creek citizenship if they were on the right roll, and they were.

The Late Migration 
There is evidence for one more migration of Catawban peoples to what was once called “Indian Territory”, and is now known as Oklahoma. Years ago I was put in touch with Dr. Thomas Blumer. He was known for researching the Catawba people. I was interested in a story he told me of Catawban people who went to Ft. Smith, Arkansas, and just inside Indian Territory. I can document my own family in the very same area. We spoke back and forth for only a couple of years, through email, and then I heard no more from him. Since that time, I have heard that he passed away. But some of his emails got me on the road to researching these people.

The Western Catawba Indian Association
Dr. Blumer got me interested in Ft. Smith, Arkansas. I mentioned the “Indian Pioneer Papers” once before in this blog entry. Well grandma’s brother wrote a little bout our family as well. Go here -- https://digital.libraries.ou.edu/whc/pioneer/ -- and type in your ancestor’s name to see if your ancestor left a post about our family. Recall Dr. Blumer mentioned some Catawban families settled near Fort Smith. Now the Indian Pioneer Papers were written during the 1930s, and elderly pioneers were asked what life was like in the Indian Nations. My great uncle was interviewed August 23rd, 1937. He was transcribed as telling the interviewer the following about our family; “My parents were natives of Arkansas and grew up near Fort Smith which was just across the line from the Indian Territory . . . After they were married in the year 1872, they moved into the Indian Territory, and settled either in Sequoyah or Leflore County. I do not know on which side of the Arkansas River they lived.” Well this is exactly where Dr. Blumer had said those Catawba settled. Books even mention Leflore County as one county the Catawba were to settle. In “A Guide to the Indian Tribes of Oklahoma” by Murial Hazel Wright; she states in her section on the Catawba that in 1897 a group tried to form a “Western Catawba Indian Association” in Fort Smith, Arkansas. She stated, “The descendants of some of the Catawba who settled in the Choctaw Nation are now absorbed into the Indian population of Haskell and Le Flore Counties. The descendants of some of those who settled in the Creek and Cherokee Nations have been reported living southeast of Checotah in McIntosh County.” Remember the Lebranche family in Checotah, and now my great uncle says his parents were in Leflore County about 1872? In “Red Carolinians” Chapman J. Milling wrote the following; "The Catawba Indian Association of Fort Smith, Arkansas," an organization having a membership of 257 persons, the alleged descendants of Catawba who went West under the act of 1848. The petitioners were distributed as follows in Arkansas and Indian Territory: Arkansas—Greenwood, 44, Barber, 42, Crow, 13, Oak Bower, 6, Fort Smith, 17; Indian Territory and Oklahoma - Checotah, 17, Jackson, 15, Star, 34, Panther, 22, Oak Lodge, 10, Redland, 4, Ramville, 2, Indianola, 3, Center, 4, Ward, 3, Sacred Heart, 1, Steigler, 2. Milling states these people went west as a result of the “act of 1848”.  I suspect some might have been in Arkansas long before that, or came later as a result of the Allotment Act or the Dawes Act.

Four Short Newspaper Articles 
Next I researched to see if I could discover anything near Ft. Smith that would mention this migration. To my surprise, I found three short newspaper articles about this migration in Ft. Smith, Arkansas and a fourth from Vinita, Oklahoma, in the heart of the Cherokee Nation. Here are those short articles;

August 16, 1889, The Fort Smith Elevator, Catawba Indian Association
The Catawba Indian Association met at Rocky Ridge on the 10th. The meeting was called to order by the President. After the reading of the minutes and the calling of the roll of the officers, transacting other business that came before the order, a call for new members was made and 90 was added to the new list, after which the meeting adjourned to meet at Ault’s’ Mill, three miles south of Fort Smith, the second day of the fair, the 16th day of October, where the delegates and all persons interested will please attend without further notice, as matters of interest will be considered.
J. Bain, President
G. W. Williamson, Secretary

I obtained the following material by writing to the University of Arkansas at Fort Smith library. One of their librarians wrote back the following:

Hello Mr. Hawkins,
Attached is a copy of the article you requested. The article mentioned another meeting held on October 16th and I found it in the October 25th edition but the film was so dark I could not get a good print to scan. The text of the article follows. Please let me know if I can be of further assistance.
“October 25, 1889 p. 3 col. 5, From Fort Smith Historical Society publication.
“Attention Catawba’s!”
The Western Catawba’s Indian Association met at Ault’s Mill October 16, 1889, at which meeting a number of new members were added to the Association, thus making it nearly 4,000 strong. They appointed an executive committee which is empowered to transact all business and place the matter before congress. The Association adjourned to convene again at a called meeting of the president.”

I found one other article from the Fort Smith Elevator newspaper. The Fort Smith Elevator” (newspaper), date probably early Jan 1895.

All Catawba Indians by blood or otherwise are requested to meet at the County Court House in Fort Smith Arkansas on Thursday, Jan 24th, 1895 at 10 o’clock a. m. for the purpose of perfecting the census roll of the Western Catawba Indian Association and the transaction of other matters that may come before the meeting. All Catawba Indians are expected to be present or by proxy as business of importance will come before the meeting.
James Bain, Preset.,
Geo. E. Williams, Scary, Western Catawba Indian Association

This speaks of a final roll count to be perfected. We know there were only 257 names on the final roll, and it was delivered to congress in 1897. There was one other very short newspaper article mentioned, and it came from the “Vinita Chieftain” in the Cherokee Nation;
The Indian Chieftain, March 1, 1888, Vinita, Indian Territory (Oklahoma), image 2 of 4. It says;  “The Western Catawba Indian Association, with headquarters in Fort Smith, proposes to petition congress to set aside for the use of all persons of Indian blood, not members of any tribe, a portion of the Indian Territory.”

So when put in proper chronological order, the Vinita article is the first. Recall how the Catawba in South Carolina adopted tribal members from many tribes? It was said in the 1740s and 50s some couldn’t even understand each other? They are trying this tactic again. The two articles from 1889 state they are perfecting a roll of names, and they say at one point, they have 4,000 members. However the 1995 article talks of perfecting a final roll, and the number of names on it drops to 257.

The Final Straw 
In 1896, after years of preparing documents, families of mixed race Catawbans finally wrote to congress the following; To the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress Assembled; Your petitioners come representing that they are the representatives of the individuals and their descendants who were formerly the members of the Catawba Tribe of Indians that owned and occupied lands in the states of North Carolina and South Carolina; that in pursuance of the policy of the United States to remove all the Indian Tribes to new homes to be provided for them west of the Mississippi River, Congress passed an act July 29,1848, appropriating $5,000 for the removal of the Catawba Indians, with their own consent, to the west of the Mississippi River, and for settling and subsisting them one year in new homes first to be obtained for them (9 stat. L., 264); that nothing was accomplished under this act; that the provisions and appropriations thereof were reenacted in the act of July 31, 1854 (10 stat. L., 316); that some efforts were made to secure for the Catawbas new homes among the Choctaw and Chickasaw Indians in the Indian Territory, and under the encouragement of hopeful results, and of the laws of Congress on the subject, many of the Catawba Indians left their lands and homes in the Carolinas and journeyed at their own expense to the country west of the Mississippi River, hoping and expecting to be there furnished with and located there and subsisted for one year upon new homes; that the Department of the Interior has so far failed to accomplish anything towards securing for the Catawbas such new homes or in doing anything in their behalf as was contemplated and expected under the provisions
of the law referred to; that the Catawbas reached the states and territories bordering on the then Indian Territory, where they expected to be settled in new homes, but have been left stranded in that territory and in the neighboring states, where they have had to seek a livelihood s best they could, without any land upon which they could build homes for themselves and families; that they are in great need, and are very anxious to be given lands, homes, or allotments of any of the lands that now are or may hereafter become available for that purpose in the Indian Territory or in Oklahoma Territory; that they desire to be informed as to the status of the tribal lands of the Catawba Indians formerly occupied by the Catawba Tribe of Indians in the Carolinas, and to secure anything that may be due them as accruing them from said lands; and also to receive any other or further relief, help, or benefits they may be found, upon careful investigation of the facts in their case, be entitled to receive in right, justice or equity, from the United States or otherwise in the matter of new homes in the West or as to their lands in the East; and they pray that all these as the facts may warrant, demand and require.

And your petitioners will ever pray.
Fort Smith, Arkansas, December, 7, 1896
James Bain, President of Catawba Indian Association
Geo. E. Williamson, Secretary of Catawba Indian Association
CATAWBA INDIANS The present location and number of those Catawba Indians who went West, expecting to be located on lands west of the Mississippi River by the Department of the Interior are as follows, as furnished by James Bain, president of the Catawba Indian Association at Fort Smith, Arkansas: Greenwood, Ark.,44; Barber, Ark, 42; Crow, Ark., 13; Oak Bower, Ark., 3; Enterprise, Ark., 6; Fort Smith, Ark., 17; Total Ark., 125. Checotah, I. T., 17; Texanna, I. T., 15; Jackson, I. T., 15; Star, I. T., 34; Panther, I. T., 22; Oak Lodge, I. T., 10; Redland, I. T., 4; Rainville, I. T., 2; Indianola, I. T., 3; Center, I. T., 4; Ward, I. T., Sacred Heart, I. T., 4; Steigler, I. T., 2; total 132. Grand total, 257.

The Government’s Response  
For the sake of brevity, here is the crux of the response of the United States government;  In reply, I have to say that it is the policy of the government to abolish the tribal relationship of the Indians as fast as possible, and to settle each Indian upon a separate tract of land that he can call his own, to the end that he may become self-supporting and independent of government bounty. It would not be in keeping with this policy, I think, to gather up people who happen to have more or less Indian blood in their veins and are living among the Whites, separate and apart from Indian communities, and incorporate them into a tribe and place them upon an Indian Reservation.

Hon. H. M. Teller, United States Senate Department of the Interior,
Office of Indian Affairs, Washington, March 28, 1896
Sir; I am in receipt of your letter of February 22nd, transmitting in pamphlet form a “Petition and Memorial in the matter of claims and demands of the Catawba Indian Association of the United States.” published at Fort Smith, Ark., giving the proceedings of a conventions of Catawba Indians held in that city April 15, 1895, called for the purpose of considering the condition, status and welfare of all Catawba, and all non-Reservation Indians, and to take action in procuring and allotment of land under the forth section of the General Allotment Act of Feb. 8, 1887 (24 Stat. L., p. 388), as amended by the Act of Feb 28., 1891 (26 Stat. L., p. 795).

This memorial purports to come from the Catawba Indians comprising, they allege, “All persons of Catawba Indian descent, and their descendants, including all persona who have intermarried with Catawba Indians, and all persons of mixed Catawba and White Blood and descent, residing in any of the states or territories of the United States or in the Indian Territory;” claiming further that the United States has never made any provisions for them in giving them a grantor title to large tracts of the public domain as it has done for the Cherokees, Creeks, and other tribes, only giving them a small tract of land in South Carolina, although belonging to the same groups of Indians as the Cherokee and Creeks; the United States of America has made no provisions whatever to occupy and use any part of the public domain belonging to the United States, except the aforesaid small tract of land in South Carolina, unless it be to take allotments under the aforesaid section 4 of the Act of 1887, as amended by the act of 1891, and asking for such Executive action or congressional legislation as may be necessary to secure equal rights with other Indians to share in the public domain belonging to the United States.

In your letter, transmitting this petition and memorial, you state that you are requested to ascertain (one) whether or not the Catawba have any tribal lands in the states of North or South Carolina to which the tribal title has not been ceded or extinguished; (two) whether there is any reason why these individual Indians may not take up lands in severalty on the public domain as provided in said section four of The Act of 1887.

You suggest that arrangements might be made whereby they could take land in severalty within the Kiowa and Comanche and Wichita Reservations, Oklahoma Territory, when the unallotted lands of said reservation shall be opened to public settlement, or between the time of the ratification of their agreements, and the issue of the president’s proclamation opening the same to settlement, or even before the ratification of said agreement, etc.

The government spokesman rambles on and on, then says; A right to the soil of the country was grounded upon the acknowledged truth of this doctrine, that the earth was made for man, and was intended by the creator of all things to be improved for the benefit of mankind. These wild lands therefore, were not recognized as the separate property of the few savages who hunted over them, but belonged to the common stock of mankind.

He rambles further, stating; “The Catawbas are now reduced, from habits of indolence and inebriation, to very few; their numbers do not exceed 110 of every age.” However he was speaking only of the Catawba Band of a greater nation, the Yesah or Esaw, as they had earlier been known. There were survivors of other bands who did not live with the Catawba. Catawba was a generic name used to describe all the people in this time in history, and this government agent used it to say they represented the entirety of the people, and it didn’t. They were the last few full bloods, the others all being mixed blood survivors of warfare, the slave raids, and small pox epidemics.

The government agent states the Catawba are a Canadian Tribe . . . which is definitely not the case.

Senator Teller, in submitting said petition, requested that it receive due attention and that he be advised as to what steps were necessary to have such change effected.

He was informed on the 16th of January, 1896, on the return of said petition, that it was now the policy of the government to abolish the tribal relations of the Indians as fast as possible, and to settle each Indian upon a separate tract of land that he can call his own to the end that we may become self-supporting and independent of government bounty. It would not be in keeping with that policy to gather up people who happen to have more or less people who happen to have Indian blood in their veins and were living among the Whites separate and apart from Indian communities and incorporate them into a tribe and place them upon an Indian Reservation. A copy of the General Allotment Act of 1887, and the Amendatory Act of 1891, with a copy of the rules and regulations indicating the manner of procedure to obtain an allotment of lands upon the public domain under the fourth section of said act were sent to said petitioners for the information as the said section wisely provided for Indians who were not living upon any reservation at the date of the passage of said act, or for whose tribe no reservation of land had been created by allowing them to apply for and to secure to themselves land upon the public domain whether surveyed or unservayed.

Thus the federal government ignored the plea of a handful of mixed race people for lands of their own. They had whittled their numbers down from 4,00 to 257 in the hopes of having a better chance at recognition, but that did no good.

The effort failed. It is interesting that there was an effort to live on the lands of the Comanche and Kiowa, because my family settled there about 1905 or so, in southwestern Oklahoma, where I still live. Before that my family settled in the Chickasaw Nation by the late 1880s, where it was also stated some Catawba had settled. Again, nothing mattered. In 1872 we were near Fort Smith on the Arkansas/Oklahoma border, where it was also stated the Catawba had settled. It doesn't matter, though. The effort was a failure. The government said no.

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Catawba -- Saponi -- Melungeon; Ch. 14: Congressional Document


Chapter 14. Congressional Document
This document says it all, really. (291) (292). In this document, we see a lot about why the attempts to create a “Western Catawba Tribe” failed. While today, we have state recognized Siouan tribes in the Carolinas and in Virginia, here in Oklahoma we have nothing and silence. Why? This document pretty much says it all. I have transcribed it. This document has earned the right to be the last section of the book. It is well worth the wait. There are probably typos. My keyboard doesn’t always type the letters I ask it to do.
The Catawba Tribe of Indians, 54th Congress, 2nd session, Doc. 144, February 23rd, 1897
February 23rd, 1897 – ordered to be printed as Senate Document for use of committee on Indian Affairs. Mr. Pettigrew presented the following memorial on behalf of the individuals formerly comprising and belonging to the Catawba Tribe of Indians, and accompanying papers. Department of the Interior, Washington, Feb. 1, 1897.
Sir, I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of 23 ultimo, with the following papers:
A memorial on behalf of the individuals formerly comprising and belonging to the Catawba Tribe of Indians.
In response thereto, I transmit herewith copy of a communication of 29th instant from Commissioner of Indian Affairs, to whom the matter was referred.
I return herewith the memorial of the Catawbas, and transmit herewith copies of the Correspondence referred to in the Commissioners letter, which contains, it is stated, a full and complete testimony of those Indians as described from the files and records of his office and other sources, with his views concerning the policy to be adopted regarding them.
Very respectfully,
D. R. Francis, secretary.
The Chairman, Committee on Indian Affairs 
Department of the Interior, Office of Indian Affairs, January 29th, 1897
            Sir, I am in receipt, by Department reference, of * * * * * a memorial in behalf of individuals formerly comprising and belonging to the Catawba Tribe of Indians, with request of the inquiries contained in said memorial be answered and information concerning the statements therein and the appended memorandum be furnished., the memorial submitted by Senator Pettigrew is signed by James Bain, and George E. Williamson, Secretary of the Catawba Indian Association, and they ask on behalf of the individuals formerly comprising and belonging to the Catawba Tribe of Indians to be informed “as to the status of the tribal lands of the Catawba Indians formerly occupied by the Catawba Tribe of Indians in the Carolinas, and to secure anything that may be due them as accruing from said lands, and also to receive any further relief, help, or benefits they may be found, upon careful examination of the facts in their case, be entitled to receive in write, justice or equity from the United States or otherwise in the matter of new homes in the West or their lands in the East.”
In answer to this memorial, I respectfully enclose herewith a copy of a letter from this office, dated January 16, 1896, addressed to Honorable H. M. Teller, United States Senate, also a copy of a letter from this office dated March 28th, 1896, addressed to R. V. Belt, esquire, in this city. These letters give a full and complete history of these Indians, as disclosed from the files and records of this office, concerning the policy that should be adopted respecting them.
The communication of Senator Pettigrew and the disclosures referred to therein a herewith returned.
Very respectfully,
Your obedient servant,
D. M. Browning, Commissioner
The Secretary of the Interior
MEMORIAL
To the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress Assembled;
Your petitioners come representing that they are the representatives of the individuals and their descendants who were formerly the members of the Catawba Tribe of Indians that owned and occupied lands in the states of North Carolina and South Carolina; that in pursuance of the policy of the United States to remove all the Indian Tribes to new homes to be provided for them west of the Mississippi River, Congress passed an act July 29,1848, appropriating $5,000 for the removal of the Catawba Indians, with their own consent, to the west of the Mississippi River, and for settling and subsisting them one year in new homes first to be obtained for them (9 stat. L., 264); that nothing was accomplished under this act; that the provisions and appropriations thereof were reenacted in the act of July 31, 1854 (10 stat. L., 316); that some efforts were made to secure for the Catawbas new homes among the Choctaw and Chickasaw Indians in the Indian Territory, and under the encouragement of hopeful results, and of the laws of Congress on the subject, many of the Catawba Indians left their lands and homes in the Carolinas and journeyed at their own expense to the country west of the Mississippi River, hoping and expecting to be there furnished with and located there and subsisted for one year upon new homes; that the Department of the Interior has so far failed to accomplish anything towards securing for the Catawbas such new homes or in doing anything in their behalf as was contemplated and expected under the provisions of the law referred to; that the Catawbas reached the states and territories bordering on the then Indian Territory, where they expected to be settled in new homes, but have been left stranded in that territory and in the neighboring states, where they have had to seek a livelihood s best they could, without any land upon which they could build homes for themselves and families; that they are in great need, and are very anxious to be given lands, homes, or allotments of any of the lands that now are or may hereafter become available for that purpose in the Indian Territory or n Oklahoma Territory; that they desire to be informed as to the status of the tribal lands of the Catawba Indians formerly occupied by the Catawba Tribe of Indians in the Carolinas, and to secure anything that may be due them as accruing them from said lands; and also to receive any other or further relief, help, or benefits they may be found, upon careful investigation of the facts in their case, be entitled to receive in right, justice or equity, from the United States or otherwise in the matter of new homes in the West or as to their lands in the East; and they pray that all these as the facts may warrant, demand and require.
And your petitioners will ever pray.
Fort Smith, Arkansas, December, 7, 1896
James Bain, President of Catawba Indian Association
Geo. E. Williamson, Secretary of Catawba Indian Association
CATAWBA INDIANS
The present location and number of those Catawba Indians who went West, expecting to be located on lands west of the Mississippi River by the Department of the Interior are as follows, as furnished by James Bain, president of the Catawba Indian Association at Fort Smith, Arkansas:
Greenwood, Ark.,44; Barber, Ark, 42; Crow, Ark., 13; Oak Bower, Ark., 3; Enterprise, Ark., 6; Fort Smith, Ark., 17; Total Ark., 125.
Checotah, I. T., 17; Texanna, I. T., 15; Jackson, I. T., 15; Star, I. T., 34; Panther, I. T., 22; Oak Lodge, I. T., 10; Redland, I. T., 4; Rainville, I. T., 2; Indianola, I. T., 3; Center, I. T., 4; Ward, I. T., Sacred Heart, I. T., 4; Steigler, I. T., 2; total 132.
Grand total, 257.
Department of the Interior, Office of Indian Affairs, Washington, January 16th, 1896
Sir,
I am in receipt of your letter of January 9, 1896, enclosing one from P. H. Head, a Catawba Indian, of Sanford, Colorado, submitting a petition purporting to have been signed by himself and 25 others, embracing six families, who claim to have once resided in South Carolina but are no longer “recognized” by said state, and asking to be united with the Ute Indians now living in the Uintah Reservation, and to be recognized by the Government as members of said Ute Tribe receiving and enjoying in common with them all rights and privileges at the protection of the government. Mr. Head, in his letter, intimates that this petition will be followed by one signed by the Ute Indians in Utah.
You asked that the matter might receive my attention, and advise given as to what steps are necessary to have this change made.
In reply, I have to say that it is the policy of the government to abolish the tribal relationship of the Indians as fast as possible, and to settle each Indian upon a separate tract of land that he can call his own, to the end that he may become self-supporting and independent of government bounty. It would not be in keeping with this policy, I think, to gather up people who happen to have more or less Indian blood in their veins and are living among the Whites, separate and apart from Indian communities, and incorporate them into a tribe and place them upon an Indian Reservation.
The General Allotment Act of 1887 wisely provided for Indains who were not living upon any reservation at the date of passage of said act, or for whose tribe no longer no reservation had been created, by allowing them to apply for and secure to themselves lands upon the public domain.
To answer your question directly as to what steps would be necessary to have these people united to the Indian Tribe occupying the Uintah Reservation in Utah, I should say that where there are no specific Treaty stipulations with any given tribe touching such matters, as to the case with these Ute Indians, the usual course perused is to obtain he consent of the tribe to which an Indian desires adoption and then to have such adoption approved by this office and the Secretary of the Interior; any such consent must be procured under the eye of the agent and should bear his certificate to the effect that the action of the Indians in adopting such Indian represented the wishes of the tribe and was taken in open council. This briefly would be the proper course to peruse in order to obtain adoption into an Indian Tribe.
The petition, with Mr. Head's letter, is herewith, respectfully returned.
Very respectfully,
D. M. Browning, Commissioner
Hon. H. M. Teller, United States Senate
Department of the Interior, Office of Indian Affairs, Washington, March 28, 1896
Sir;
I am in receipt of your letter of February 22nd, transmitting in pamphlet form a “Petition and Memorial in the matter of claims and demands of the Catawba Indian Association of the United States.” published at Fort Smith, Ark., giving the proceedings of a conventions of Catawba Indians held in that city April 15, 1895, called for the purpose of considering the condition, status and welfare of all Catawba, and all non-Reservation Indians, and to take action in procuring and allotment of land under the forth section of the General Allotment Act of Feb. 8, 1887 (24 Stat. L., p. 388), as amended by the Act of Feb 28., 1891 (26 Stat. L., p. 795).
This memorial purports to come from the Catawba Indians comprising, they allege, “All persons of Catawba Indian descent, and their descendants, including all persona who have intermarried with Catawba Indians, and all persons of mixed Catawba and White Blood and descent, residing in any of the states or territories of the United States or in the Indian Territory;” claiming further that the United States has never made any provisions for them in giving them a grantor title to large tracts of the public domain as it has done for the Cherokees, Creeks, and other tribes, only giving them a small tract of land in South Carolina, although belonging to the same groups of Indians as the Cherokee and Creeks; the United States of America has made no provisions whatever to occupy and use any part of the public domain belonging to the United States, except the aforesaid small tract of land in South Carolina, unless it be to take allotments under the aforesaid section 4 of the Act of 1887, as amended by the act of 1891, and asking for such Executive action or congressional legislation as may be necessary to secure equal rights with other Indians to share in the public domain belonging to the United States.
In your letter, transmitting this petition and memorial, you state that you are requested to ascertain (one) whether or not the Catawba have any tribal lands in the states of North or South Carolina to which the tribal title has not been ceded or extinguished; (two) whether there is any reason why these individual Indians may not take up lands in severalty on the public domain as provided in said section four of The Act of 1887.
You suggest that arrangements might be made whereby they could take land in severalty within the Kiowa and Comanche and Wichita Reservations, Oklahoma Territory, when the unallotted lands of said reservation shall be opened to public settlement, or between the time of the ratification of their agreements, and the issue of the president’s proclamation opening the same to settlement, or even before the ratification of said agreement, etc. 
In reply I have to state that the Catawba Indians are a division of North American Indians, which included in the last century twenty-eight confederated tribes. A few of these were in North Carolina, but most of them were in South Carolina. The principle tribe in the later state was the “Katawba.”  and their chief on in the former was the “Woccon”. The few survivors of this people are on the Catawba Reservation in York County, S. C. They do not belong to the Muscogeean linguistic stock, of North American Indians, as intimated in the Memorial, but to the Siouan stock, while the Cherokees belong to the Iroquoian stock.
In a publication entitled Statistics of South Carolina by Robert, Mills, published in 1826, in Charleston, South Carolina, by Hurlbut and Lloyd, pages 104-129, is given a history of the Indians or aboriginal of the country, to the effect that South Carolina, when first settled by the English, was settled with numerous tribes of Indians whose settlements extended from the ocean to the mountains. From documents extant in the secretary of state's office, and other sources that might be relied on, Mr. Mills concluded that the number of these different nations or tribes exceeded twenty-eight. The Westoes and Savannahs were the two most potent tribes. A right to the soil of the country was grounded upon the acknowledged truth of this doctrine, that the earth was made for man, and was intended by the creator of all things to be improved for the benefit of mankind. These wild lands therefore, were not recognized as the separate property of the few savages who hunted over them, but belonged to the common stock of mankind. This doctrine is agreeable to the judicial determination of the courts of South Carolina with respect to the rights in land derived solely from uninterrupted possession for a term formerly of five, now (1826) of ten years.
But most of the first settlers of Carolina, not satisfied to rest their right of soil upon the law of nature and their government, made private purchases from the Indians, and the government (state) itself entered into treaties with the aborigines. The first public deed of conveyance by the Indians found on record is dated March 10, 1675.
In giving a description of the names, location, and number of Indian tribes in Carolina about the year 1700 he gives the following on page 108:
“The Catawbas, Sugaree on Sugar Creek, Lancaster District, occupied the country above Camden on each side of the river of the same name, a small remnant of this tribe of Indians still occupies a tract of country, laid off 15 miles square, lying partly in York and partly in Lancaster districts, on both sides of the river.”
Speaking of the population, he states (p. 114):
“The Catawbas are now reduced, from habits of indolence and inebriation, to very few; their numbers do not exceed 110 of every age. In 1700, (some years after the first settlement of Carolina) they mustered 1,500 fighting men. This would give the population of the nation at that time between 8,000 and 10,000 souls. About the year 1743 the Catawbas could only bring 400 warriors into the field, composed partly of refugees from various smaller tribes, who, about this time, were obliged by the state of affairs to associate with them, on account of their reduced numbers. Among them were the Wateree, Chowan, Congaree, Nachee, Yamasee, and Coosah Indians. At present not 50 men can be counted in the list of their warriors.
The remains of their nation now occupy an area of 15 square miles, laid out on both sides of the Catawba River., and include parts of York and Lancaster districts. This tract embraces a body of fine lands, timbered with oak, etc. These lands are almost all leased out to White settlers for 99 years, renewable at the rate of $15-20 per annum for each plantation of about 300 acres. The annual income from these lands is estimated to amount to about $5,000. This sum, prudently managed, would suffice to support the whole nation, now comprised of about 30 families, comfortably. Yet these wretched Indians live is a state of abject poverty, the consequences of their indolence and dissipated habits. They ???? for their rent before it is due, and the $10 or $20 dollars received are frequently spent in a debauch; poverty, beggary, and misery follow for a year.
The Catawba have two villages, one on each side of the river. The largest is Newtown, situated directly on the river bank. To the other, which is upon the opposite side, they have given no name, but it is generally called Turkeyhead. King's Bottom” is a very rich tract of land which the Indians have had sense enough to reserve for their children.
The first settlement was made in this district by emigrants from Pennsylvania around the year 1745, was called “The Waxhaws”, from the name of the creek on which the principle settlements were located (then supposed to be within the bounds of North Carolina). These settlements were made in the neighborhood of the Catawbas, then a powerful and warlike tribe of Indians., whose chief town was situated on the west side of Sugar Creek (more properly “Sugawee,” that being the ancient Indian name), just opposite the mouth of Little Sugar Creek. The sight of this ancient town is now in York district and under cultivation in the plantation of Mr. Alderson, but not a vestige of it is to be seen.
About the year 1750 the early settlers of the Waxhaws became in a great measure rid of their powerful and dangerous neighbors, the Indians, as the small pox broke out among them and carried off, from the best information, three-fourths of the whole tribe. Shortly afterwards they leased out most of their lands on Sugar Creek to some of the emigrants and removed and settled in the towns where they now reside.”
In the description of the county of York, he states:
“This section of the of the country was settled about the year 1760, principly from Pennsylvania and Virginia. Its name may be placed to York, in Pennsylvania, from whence some of the first settlers came.
There are no other settlements, as villages, in the district, except the Indian settlement on Catawba River. These Indians have two towns. The most important is called Newtown, situated immediately on the river; the other is on the opposite side, and is called Turkeyhead. The Indian lands occupy an extent of country on both sides of the river equal to 180 square miles or 115,200 square acres. [NOTE: not my mistake – it does say “square acres. An acre is a measurement of area, not length, so the word “square” is redundant, confusing, and misleading]. Most of this has been disposed by them to the whites in leases for ninety-nine years, renewable. The rent of each plantation is from ten to twenty dollars per annum . . . The Catawba Nation could, at the first settlement of the state; muster 1,500 fighting men. At present their warriors do not exceed 30. For your information I include a sketch of a portion of a map of South Carolina and North Carolina, showing the aforesaid Reservation of 180 square miles.
Schoolcraft, in his History of the Indian Tribes of the United States, volume 3, page 293, has an article on “Carolina Manuscript Respecting the Origin of the Catawba”. In this paper he states that [note: this history is incorrect]:
“The Catawba are a Canadian Tribe. The Connewangos were their heredity enemies, and with the aid of the French, were likely at last, to overwhelm them. The Catawba, judging correctly of their perilous condition, determined on a removal to the vicinity of the English settlements. They set out from their ancient homes about the year 1650, crossed the St. Lawrence, probably around Detroit, and bore for the headwaters of the Kentucky River. The Connewangos all the time kept in full pursuit. The fugitives, embarrassed with their women and children, saw that their enemies would overtake them, chose a position near the source of the Kentucky and there awaited the onset of their more powerful adversaries. Turning therefore, upon their pursuers, with the energy desperation sometimes inspires, they gave them a terrible overthrow. This little nation, after their great victory, without proper regard to policy, divided into two bands. The one remained on the Kentucky, which was called by the hunters the Catawba, and were in time absorbed into the great families of the Chickasaws and Choctaws. The other band settled in Botetourt County, Virginia., upon a stream afterwards called Catawba Creek. They remained there but a few years, their hunters pressing on to the South, discovered the Catawba River, in South Carolina (Eswa Tavora), and the entire Virginia band (about 1660) came in a body to affect a permanent settlement upon that stream.
[NOTE: this whole story has no basis in fact whatsoever. Spanish explorers discovered Siouan speaking tribesmen in the Carolinas in the 1540s and again in the 1560/70s.]
“In the year 1735 the nation had in reservation only 30 acres of their large and fertile territory, not a foot of which was in cultivation. In the history of South Carolina, Ramsey solemnly evokes to the people of South Carolina to cherish this small remnant of a noble race, always the friends of the Carolinians, and ready to peril all for their safety. They never have shed a drop of American blood, nor stolen property to the value of a cent. They have lost everything but their honesty. Hagler or Haigler was a great man, and the nation still speak of him with great feeling. They have never looked up since his death.”
Hagler or Haigler was succeeded by King Prow or Frow in 1765, who reigned but a short time. On his death, General New River, who had gained a splendid victory on New River in Virginia over the Northern Indians, was called to rule over them., they having determined, in imitation of their white brethren, to repudiate royalty. He was succeeded by General Scott, grandson of King Hagler or Haigler, and afterwards by Colonel Ayers.
In an appendix to the laws of the Colonial and state governments relating to Indians and Indian affairs, from 1633 to 1831, inclusive, published in Washington City in 1832 by Thompson and Homans, is given the “Proceedings of the Congress and the Confederation relating to Indians and Indian Affairs.”
On page 15 of said Appendix, under the date of November 2, 1782, appears the following, viz:
“The Committee, consisting of Mr. Duane, Mr. Ramsey, and Mr. Wharton, to whom was referred a letter of the first, from the Secretary of War, report;
“That they have had a conference with the two deputies of the Catawba Nation of Indians; that their mission respects certain tracts of land reserved for their use in the state of South Carolina, which they wish may be so secured to their tribe as not to be intruded into by force, nor alienated even with their own consent; whereupon,
“Resolved, that it be recommended to the legislature of the State of South Carolina to take such measures for the satisfaction and security of the said tribe as the said legislature shall, in their wisdom, think fit.”
In Brevard's Digest of the Laws of South Carolina, vol. 1, title 96, Indians, among other things appears the following, adopted in 1808, viz.:
“Sec. 8. Whereas it is expedient that the Catawba Indians should have the power to grant and make leases for life, for lives, as well as for a term of years, of the lands vested in them by the laws of this state.
“Sec. 9. Be it therefore enacted, that from and immediately after the passing of this act, it shall and may be lawful for the Catawba Indians to grant and make to any person or persons any lease or leases, for life or lives or term of years of any of the lands vested in them by the laws of this state: provided that no lease shall exceed the term of 99 years or three lives in being.
“ Sec. 10. And be it further enacted, that the governor for the time being shall be authorized and is hereby required to appoint five fit and proper persons to superintend the leasing of the lands of the Catawba Indians in manner aforesaid. And no lease of the lands of the aforesaid Catawba Indians hereafter to be made, whether for life or lives or term of years, shall be healed or deemed as valid and good in law unless the same be witnessed by a majority of the said superintendents at the time of making thereof, and signed and sealed by at least four of the headmen or chiefs of said Catawba Indians: Provided, that an annual rent be reserved as a compensation for such lease.
“Sec. 11. And be it enacted, That the said superintendent shall be commissioned for the purpose aforesaid, for seven years, which commission shall be recorded in the office of Secretary of State, and an office copy thereof shall be taken and received as good evidence in any court of law or equity within this state as the original would be if produced in any case within it might be necessary to produce such original commission. 
“Sec. 12. And it be further enacted, that all acts and claims of acts or resolutions repugnant hereto be, and the same are hereby repealed.
Sec. 13. Whereas many inconveniences have been experienced by the leases of the Catawba Indians, as well as by the Indians themselves,, under the operation of an act passed in the year of our Lord 1808, which act ordains that two shall at any time be made for such lease, or any part thereof, for more than three years rent in advance, and that no payments shall be deemed or held to be valid unless the same be made conformably to this act, and receipts therefor given by such of the chiefs of the nation as usually transact their affairs, and by a majority of the said superintendents.
“Sec. 14. And it be further enacted, that no payments shall be hereafter made for such lease, or any part thereof, for more than seven years in advance, and that no payment shall be held or deemed valid; unless receipt therefor be given and attested by one of the said superintendents.
“Sec. 15. And it be further enacted, that a lease for three years or 99 years of the said Catawba lands shall be, and the same is hereby, declared to be a qualification equivalent to a free hold in all cases where a free hold is not required by the constitution of this state or of the United States.
In 1815 an act was passed by the legislature of South Carolina entitled “An Act to Authorize and Empower the Superintendent of the Catawba Indians to Institute Actions for Trespass on Their Lands, and For Other Purposes Therein Mentioned.”
“Whereas certain persons now hold possession of the lands belonging to the Catawba Indians, without obtaining a lease for the same from the headmen or chiefs of the nation, agreeable to the act of assembly passed the 15th day of December, 1808, empowering the said Indians to lease the lands vested in then, and there is no power or authority in any person or persons to institute an action or actions at law to put such persons as hold their lands without a lease out of the possession thereof: For remedy whereof, be it enacted by the honorable Senate and House of Representatives, now met and setting in general assembly, and by te authority of the same, that from and immediately after the passing of this act, the superintendent now appointed, or that may be hereafter appointed, by the governor of the state, or a majority of them shall be, and are hereby authorized and empowered, in their own names or in the names of a majority of them, as agents, to commence and prosecute, an action or actions of trespass to try titles to the lands claimed by and vested in the said Indians, that is now or may hereafter be held in possession by any person or persons, without a lease from the headmen or chief of said nation of Indians, in pursuance of the act of the general assembly aforesaid, and also in like manner an action or actions of quare clausum fregit, for trespass committed on said lands; and also actions for injuries done to the personal property of said Indians; and the damage recovered in the actions to try titles, or in any actions to quare clausum fregit, or action for injury done to the personal property of said Indians, shall be collected by the said superintendent for the benefit of said Indians.
“And it be enacted by the authority aforesaid, that the said superintendents, or a majority of them, shall have power I the same manner, as they are authorized to bring actions, to make distress for arrearages of rent now due, or that may hereafter become due, or bring an action or actions to recover the same in any court having jurisdiction.
“And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, that this shall be deemed and taken as a public act, and judicially noticed as such without special pleading, and liberally construed for carrying the purposes aforesaid into effect.”
“Catawba Indians – For the removal of the Catawba Tribe of Indians now in the limits of the State of North Carolina to the Indian Country west of the Mississippi, with the consent of said tribe, under the direction of the President of the United States, a sum not exceeding $5,000: provided no portion of this sum shall be expended for the purpose of removing said Indians until the President shall first obtain a home for them. Amongst some of the tribes west of the Mississippi River, with their consent, and without any charge upon the government.”
In a letter dated November 13th, 1848, John C. Mullay, a clerk in this office, forwarded a letter, dated Oct. 6, 1848, from one George T. Mason, enclosing a request by the Chief of the Catawbas, a memorial of said tribe of Indians at Quallatown, Haywood County, N. C., dated Oct. 4, 1848, on file in this office (misc. M., 280), addressed to the President, signed by William Morrison, chief, and following heads of each Catawba family, viz., Phillip Kegg, Lewis Stevens, John Heart, John Scott, Franklin Kenty, Antony George, David Harris, Thomas Stevens, John Harris, Jesse Harris, Nancey George, Sally Harris, Polly Redhead, Patsey George, Harriet Stevens, Betsy Heart, Cynthia Kegg, Patsy George, Jr., Mary Ayres, Margaret Ayres, Betsey Ayres, Susan Kegg, Eliza Kanty, Frankie Brown, Jinny Joe, Jenny Ayres, Rachel Brown, Easther Scott, Katy Joe, Sally Redhead, William George, Peggy Kanty, Rosa Ayres, Becky George, Polly Harris, Elizabeth Brown, Polly Harris [same name is listed twice], Mary Joe, Allen Harris, Mary Harris and James Kegg, comprising 42 persons, all of whom signed by mark, in the presence of Abram Sellers, George T. Mason., and John T. Gibson, requesting the appointment of a reliable and trustworthy business man to superintend their removal west.
In transmitting said memorial Mr. Mullay speaks of him, after several personal interviews held with said chiefs, as an intelligent, respectable Catawba, and of the preference of his people to a home with the Chickasaw Indians West, who, he stated, had at one time given the Catawba an invitation to settle among them. 
In this annual report of this office for the year 1849 (Doc. 5, p. 949), it is stated that – 
“The department has not yet succeeded in finding a suitable home west of the Mississippi for the Catawba Indians residing in North Carolina. They prefer a residence among the Chickasaws, to whom application was made to receive them, but to which there has been no final answer. Proper efforts will be made carry out, next season, if practicable, the Law of July 29th, 1848, providing for their removal.” 
Agent A.M. M. Upshaw was instructed, Nov. 6, 1848 (Chickasaw Letter Book C., p. 32), to ascertain whether or not the Chickasaw Nation would receive the Catawba on the terms prescribed by the law. 
In said instructions it was intimidated that the Department knew very little about the Catawbas, or of their origins, or of their language and customs, or how they got from their home in South Carolina to Haywood County, in North Carolina. They were believed however, to be a quiet and well-disposed people, numbering in all about 80 souls. From their location and supposed former alliances with the Cherokees, the impression was established that they would prefer a residence with the Cherokees, and steps were taken to ascertain whether or not they would receive the Catawbas on the terms prescribed. Information was subsequently obtained that they would probably object to going to the Cherokees, and expressed a preference to take homes with the Chickasaws. Agent Upshaw responded, on the 8th of January, 1849, that the Chickasaws would probably receive the Catawbas, but that their council must first act on the subject. (Chickasaw U. 55) It does not appear however, that the Chickasaw Council ever took action on the case. 
Subsequently, it appears that the Choctaw Council passed an act entitled “An Act Naturalizing Certain Persons Therein” which was approved November 3rd, 1893, (Choctaw Laws, 1869, p. 124) as follows, viz.:
Sec. 11. Be it enacted by the general counsel of the Choctaw Nation assembled, that William Morrison, Thomas Morrison, Sarah Jane Morrison, Molly Redhead, Betsey Heart, Rebeccah Heart, Phillip Keggo, and the infant child of Phillip Keggo, Rosey Ayres, Betsey Ayers, Julian Ayres, Mary Ayres, Sophonia Ayres, and Sally Ayres be, and they are hereby declared, naturalized citizens of the Choctaw Nation, invested with all the rights, privileges, and immunities of Naturalized citizens of the same.”
Although there is nothing in the act to show the nationality of these persons, you will see by a comparison of the names attached to the aforementioned memorial of the Catawbas, that they are the same persons. This opinion is corroborated by a subsequent Act of said council, approved November 12, 1856 (Choctaw Laws, 1869, p. 153) entitled, “An Act Giving Greater privileges to the Catawbas hereby naturalized).”
Sec. 18. Be it enacted by the General Counsel of the Choctaw Nation Assembled, that the Catawbas who were made citizens of this nation by a special act of Session XX, section11, of 1853, between the Choctaws and the government of the United States.”
The Hon. James L. Orr, of Anderson, S. C., and Representatives in Congress, having called the attention of this office to the fact that a remnant of the Catawba Tribe of Indians numbering about 70 persons residing within his state, expressed a desire to become affiliated with the Choctaw people; that they possessed a small reservation in South Carolina that they were willing to sell, and that the proceeds in connection with a contemplated appropriation for their benefit of the legislature of the state, would supply them with a fund amounting, as was presumed, , to about $5,000 sufficient, if properly applied,, to enable them to make the improvements necessary to a successful commencement of cultivating the soil, and of other pursuits incident to civilized life. This office instructed C. W. Dean, Superintendent of Indian Affairs, in a letter addressed to him at Ft. Smith, Arkansas, dated January 6, 1857 to direct agent D. H. Cooper to lay the subject before the Choctaw nation in council assembled or otherwise, as he might deem most judicious, inviting attention to the generosity and hospitality of the Choctaws manifested in the reception and kind treatment of a small party of their fellow Catawbas, then living among the Choctaws which had inspired them with confidence in that people, and with an anxious desire the same privileges with their brethren who had gone before them in the same enterprise.
He was advised that in the Indians appropriations act approved July 31st 1854, (10 stat. 1, p. 316), the following item appears, viz. – 
“For the reappropriation for expenses of the removal of the Catawba Indians to the west of the Mississippi River, and of settling, and subsisting them one year in their new homes, provided that a home shall first be obtained for them, and that they shall be removed only with their own consent to receive this small band of Catawba’s, and, and would permit them to reside within the limits of their territory.
Superintendent Dean reported on this matter March 20, 1857, as follows:
“It is the opinion of Agent Cooper, in which opinion I concur, that nothing can be effected as to the procurement of homes for these Indians among the Choctaws until the next session of the general counsel of the nation, and I believe it does not again convene until next Autumn.”
“I was in hope, indeed, from inquiry, was almost satisfied – that the act of the Choctaw Counsel passed at the Choctaw Counsel passed at the session of 1853, conferring the privilege of citizenship upon certain Catawba Indians that emigrated and were permitted to settle in the Choctaw Country in that year, was made general and comprehensive in its terms, so as to include all the Catawba Indians that might be disposed to cast their lot with them, as there seemed at the time to be an understanding that the greater portion, if not all the residue of the tribe was desirous of emigrating to the Choctaw Country.; but I have recently procured a copy of the act of 1853 (a transcript of which is in file in the Indian Bureau), and perceive it is limited and specific in its terms, including only those that emigrated in that year.
I am further inclined in the belief that the Choctaws were disappointed that the Catawbas that emigrated at the time mentioned were unable to turn over to the treasury of the nation a certain sum of money that it was supposed that they were to receive from the United States for their removal and temporary subsistence, but which amount, instead of being paid into the treasury of the Choctaws, reverted instead to the surplus fund of the treasury of the united States. As thee Catawbas were invested with the full privileges of the citizens of the Choctaw Nation and became equal participants in the distribution of their annuities, etc., it seems not unreasonable that any fund set apart for the use of these Catawba’s should have become a portion of the common stock for common good, and such, I learn, was the general expectation of all parties when the act of 1853 was passed.
Agent Cooper gives it as his opinion that on assembling of the National Council of the Choctaws and Chickasaws, on the payment of a reasonable sum thereof by the United States or by the State of South Carolina.
Under these circumstances, and as from the tenor of your letter of January 6, the exact provision that may be made for the removal and settlement of the Catawbas of South Carolina appears as yet to be indefinite. And unascertained. I beg permission to suggest that the interim that must occur before further action can be had with the tribes be occupied in adjusting definitely and with precision what amount will be under control of the department so secure the purposes indicated, so that a proposition determinant in its character may be ready to be laid before the tribes whose cooperation is asked in the premises.
“From Agent Cooper's letter to me on the subject, I beg leave to offer the following extant, and to ask for it the consideration of the department:
“I have but little doubt the remnant of the Catawba Indians can be accommodated in the Choctaw and Chickasaw Country, upon the payment by the United States or the State of South Carolina, of a reasonable consideration to the Choctaws and Chickasaws, both of which tribes have an interest direct in all sums of money that might be realized from the use or sale of the country embraced within their boundaries.
No action appears to have been taken by the government or any of the Indians on the question of their removal to the Choctaw or any other Indian Country until 1872 when Hon. J. C. Harper, of the House of Representatives from Georgia, brought to the attention of this office the question of the removal of certain Indians in North Carolina and Georgia. Presuming they were Cherokee, this office requested him on the 13th of June, 1872, to furnish a list of the names and ages of said Indians. In reporting the names, Mr. Joseph McDowell, of Fairmount, Georgia, under date of October 1872 (Misc. M., 229), stated that the Indians referred to, and asking relief of the government, were Catawba Indians, and 84 in number, viz:
Those italicized desired permission of the president to settle in the Indian Territory, all of whom Mr. McDowell states were good and loyal people, and that if any Indian deserved assistance from the government these Indians did: that their grandfathers on both sides the government in the War for Independence, and that their names were on the muster rolls in the War Department.
William Guy, of Granville County, Georgia, and Simon Jeffers, of Belleville Virginia, Catawba Indians, served five years in the Army and were honorably discharged, and these 84 persons were their descendants.
‘1. Buckner Guy, 80; 2. Lucinda Anderson, his daughter, wife of Wm. Anderson, a Cherokee, 60; 3. Polly Guy, 50; 4. James Guy, 55; 5. Clark Guy, 53; 6. Judy or Judith Guy, 48; 7. Silvey Guy 48; 31; 8. Elizabeth Guy, 20; 9. George Guy, 19; 10. Amanda Anderson, 23; 11. Nathaniel Anderson, 23; 12. Mary Anderson, 21; 13. Eliza Anderson, 21; 14. Nancy Anderson, 19; 15. Corneilia Anderson, 18; 16. William Washington Guy, 30; 17. Albert A. Guy, 28; 18. Amanda Guy, 26; 19. Joseph M. Guy, 24; 20. Caroline T. Guy, 22; 21. Martha Guy, 25; 22. Alexander Guy, 21; 23. Sarah Guy, 18; 24. Geraldine Guy, 12; 25. George Guy, 11; 26. Henrietta Guy, 9; 26. Tennessee Guy, 7; 28. Ann Guy, 14; 29. Rosa Guy, 12; 30. McClelland Guy, 8; 31. U. S. Grant Guy or Wolford Grant Guy, 7; 32. Louisa Guy, 8; 33. John Guy, 6; 34. Johnson Guy, 11; 35. William Guy, 6; 36.  Katy Guy, 2; 37. Peter Guy, 40; 38. Tabatha Steward, 50; 39. Viney Guy, 48; 40. Ann Gijeon, 46; 41. Katharine Guy, 45; 42. Rachel Guy, 43; 43. June Bingham, married a White man; 41; 44. George Guy, 28; 45. Thomas Guy, 14; 46. John Guy, 12; 47. Henrietta Guy, 8; 48. Mary Guy, 23; 49. Newton Guy, 16; 50. Croline Guy, 14; 51. William Guy, 12; 52. Ann Guy 10; 53. Daniel Guy, 35; 54. Mary Guy, 45; 55. Charles Guy, 18; 56. George Guy, 16; 57. Adaline Guy, 14; 58. Brag Guy, 12; 59. Judy Guy, daughter of Simon Jeffers;  80; 60. Edmond Guy, 80; 61. Willis Guy, 61; 62. Mahala Guy, 56; 63. George W. Guy, 36; 64. Mary S. Guy, 33; 65. Andrew T. Guy, 31; 66. Martha Bingham, married a White man; 29; 67. Amanda M. McDowell, married a White man, 27; 68. Joshua R. Guy, 25; 69. Amanda T. Guy; White wife of Joshua R. Guy, 24; 70. Erastus M. Guy, 3; 71. Mary C. Guy, White wife of A. T. Guy, 28; 72. Henry H, Guy, 4; 73. Emma F. Guy, 2; 74. Ruth M. Guy, 21; 75. Sarah A. Guy; 19; 76. Isaac H. Guy, 17; 77. Millard F. Guy, 16; 78. Lilly R. Guy; 12; 79. Samuel H. McDowell, son of Amanda M,. # 67, 5; 80. Eli H. H. J. McDowell, son of Amanda M., # 67, 1; 81. Elizabeth Guy, wife of G. W. Guy, White, 30; 82. Laurado Guy; 4; 83. Caly Lee Guy, 2; 84. Charles Bingham, son of Martha # 66, 3.
As these Indians were Catawba's and not Cherokees, Mr. McDowell was informed Oct. 22, 1872, that they could not receive any of the benefits arising from the Cherokee removal fund of 1848.
A schedule of seventy persons very similar to the forgoing list, each containing many of the same names was forwarded to the office by Mr. McDowell, Oct. 19, 1869 (Misc. M. 805), but for the same reasons, no relief could be granted them at that time more than in 1872.
Another interval of 15 years or more lapsed before the subject was again presented to the department.
On the 21st of November, 1887, James Kegg, of Whittier North Carolina, in addressing the Secretary of the interior (No. 31383), made the following statement, viz.:
Many years ago, his people, the Catawba Indians, leased the land they owned in South Carolina and became a wondering tribe, without homes for their wives and children. They made application he states, to the Cherokees of North Carolina, for homes upon their land and made over to them all their leased lands in South Carolina in consideration of their adoption into their tribe; that about 500 were so adopted and have been identified as such; that some 300 of them were removed west under the Cherokee Treaty of New Echota, made December 29th, 1835, leaving a few living among the Cherokees as Cherokee citizens and a small portion remaining in South Carolina “upon a section of land which they owned and was not leased out for a term of years, upon which they now reside.” Those Catawbas remaining in South Carolina, Mr. Kegg states, had no interest whatever in the lands which were leased out by those who became Cherokees by adoption, and he wished to ascertain whether or not the United States gave its consent to the Catawbas to lease out their lands to the State of South Carolina or to her citizens, and if so, upon what terms and the length of term said leases ran.
Without endorsing the statements herein made by Mr. Kegg. He was informed on the 7th of April, 1888, that the Catawba Indians held their lands in South Carolina under agreements or arrangements made with that state over which the Federal Government had no control or jurisdiction. He was then cited to the laws of South Carolina, a set forth I Brevard's Digest, vol 1., titled “Indians”, and to the volume in colonial law herein cited, and for further information respecting the history and previous status of the lands and leases he was referring to the Secretary of State of the State of South Carolina.
There have been frequent communications from and concerning the Catawba Indians since 1888, but none involving of furnishing any new facts of information concerning the history or status of these Indians or their lands.
The last communication on the subject was a letter dated Jan 9th, 1896, from Senator H. M. Teller, including one from P. H. Head (who had been furnished a copy of office letter to Senator Teller dated Feb.13, 1890, giving the status given the status of their lands in South Carolina as above set forth), a Catawba Indian, of Sanford, Colo., submitting a petition purporting to have been signed by himself and 25 others, embracing six families, Catawba Indians, who claim to have once resided in South Carolina, but who are no longer recognized by said state, and ask to be united with the Indians now living on the Uintah Reservation in Utah, and to be recognized by the government as members of the Ute Tribe, receiving and enjoying in common with them all the rights and privileges of Utes and the protection of the government. In said letter Mr. Head intimated that this petition would be followed by another signed by the said Ute Indians, which however, has not yet been received in this office.
Senator Teller, in submitting said petition, requested that it receive due attention and that he be advised as to what steps were necessary to have such change effected.
He was informed on the 16th of January, 1896, on the return of said petition, that it was now the policy of the government to abolish the tribal relations of the Indians as fast as possible, and to settle each Indian upon a separate tract of land that he can call his own to the end that we may become self-supporting and independent of government bounty. It would not be in keeping with that policy to gather up people who happen to have more or less people who happen to have Indian blood in their veins and were living among the Whites separate and apart from Indian communities and incorporate them into a tribe and place them upon an Indian Reservation. A copy of the General Allotment Act of 1887, and the Amendatory Act of 1891, with a copy of the rules and regulations indicating the manner of procedure to obtain an allotment of lands upon the public domain under the fourth section of said act were sent to said petitioners for the information as the said section wisely provided for Indians who were not living upon any reservation at the date of the passage of said act, or for whose tribe no reservation of land had been created by allowing them to apply for and to secure to themselves land upon the public domain whether surveyed or unservayed.
With respect to incorporation into the Ute Tribe of Indians occupying the Uintah Reservation, Senator Teller was advised that where there are no specific treaty stipulations given with any given tribe touching such matters, as is the case with the Ute Indians, the usual course to pursue is to obtain the consent of the tribe into which an Indian desires adoption, and then have such adoption approved by this office and the Secretary of the Interior. Any such consent must be procured under the eye of the agent and should bear his certificate to the effect that the action of the Indians in adopting such Indian represented the wishes of the tribe and was taken in open council. This, briefly, would be the proper course to pursue in order to obtain adoption into an Indian tribe.
Having furnished tis full and complete history of the Catawbas, as far as the same is disclosed is disclosed from the files and records of this office and other sources, you will see just what lands these Indians held and now hold in South Carolina. I know of no land that they own in their tribal capacity as Catawbas in North Carolina. I know of no reason why these individual Indians may not take up lands in severalty under the fourth section of the act of 1887 aforesaid. I do not think it would be practicable or wise to ask the President to withhold from public settlement the lands ceded by the Kiowa and Comanche Indians by their last agreement, when that agreement is ratified by Congress, until such Indians had first taken allotments thereon. They should conform to the act of 1887, as all the other Indians in like condition have to do.
Your attention is particularly invited to the views of this office in office letter of January 16th, 1896, herein referred to with respect to the policy that should be adopted respecting the Catawba Indians.
This memorial is herewith returned.
Very respectfully,
D. M. Browning
Commissioners
R. V. Belt, Esq.
1314 Tenth Street NW, City
It’s odd they mentioned the Comanche/Kiowa lands. No one ever mentioned anything about that to me before. I can’t help but recall my gret grandpa leased land from the Kiowa Agency for cattle raising at the beginning of the 20th century (293). Per IPP, they lived in either Leflore Co or Sequoyah County in E Ok – Leflore County is where some Catawba settled (294). Later my family moved to the Chickasaw Nation. Some Catawba were also said to have settled there (295). Family story says they started to sign up for Dawes Rolls, but they got upset at something and they never signed up. (296) Was the above document what upset them? This sure is a lot of coincidences.
I have spent years trying to discover who our ancestors were, always thinking they were Cherokee. But my research has lead me more towards the Catawba than the Cherokee. I didn’t expect that.
Lastly I'd like to reassert a paragraph, a direct quote from the above document -- we didn't have a chance:
I have to say that it is the policy of the government to abolish the tribal relationship of the Indians as fast as possible, and to settle each Indian upon a separate tract of land that he can call his own, to the end that he may become self-supporting and independent of government bounty. It would not be in keeping with this policy, I think, to gather up people who happen to have more or less Indian blood in their veins and are living among the Whites, separate and apart from Indian communities, and incorporate them into a tribe and place them upon an Indian Reservation.
References:
291. Congressional Document; The Catawba Tribe of Indians, 54th Congress, 2nd session, Doc. 144, February 23rd, 1897
292. http://vancehawkins.blogspot.com/2013/01/54th-congress-2nd-session-senate.html ; Also from the book., “Finding Our Indian Blood”; Vance Hawkins; © 2013  Bluewater Publishing
294. Indian Pioneer Papers; https://digital.libraries.ou.edu/whc/pioneer/ ; “The Indian-Pioneer Papers oral history collection spans from 1861 to 1936. It includes typescripts of interviews conducted during the 1930s by government workers with thousands of Oklahomans regarding the settlement of Oklahoma and Indian territories, as well as the condition and conduct of life there. Consisting of approximately 80,000 entries, the index to this collection may be accessed via personal name, place name, or subject.” Interview is also found in my book, “Finding Our Indian Blood”. © 2013, Bluewater Publishing.
295. “The Catawba Indians, People of the River”; Douglas Summers Brown; © 1966 and publication by University of South Carolina Press
296. “Finding Our Indian Blood”, Vance Hawkins, © Bluewater Publishing, 2013