The Civil War… in Oklahoma? ~ Part 3
Well, it looks as if the exact site of this battle still hasn't been confirmed. What new details can be uncovered?
The question was, what did the Union Indians want? The answer may lead to where and why they moved along as they did. Actually, the answer to this was simple. There was overwhelming evidence that all they wanted was to remain neutral. They wanted to leave the fighting between the whites, it wasn't any business of theirs.
In the agricultural area of Talasi, a trading post was set up where a white man married an Indian woman. A mixed blood Cherokee scout, Jesse Chisholm, married their daughter. He had a post set up north and traded with all of "the wild tribes of the southwest." There were several different tribes which had settled all around these two trading posts. Further up the river a group of Delawares settled under a great scout named Black Beaver.
In 1861 a couple of Shawnees made way to Kansas carrying a letter with them. The message from the council of the tribes asked the government in Kansas to give them the protection they were promised with the Indian treaty. The complaint was of men coming through their grounds scaring the children and mothers. They asked the government what to do.
The answer came stating troops would soon be sent. Those Indians who were true to the government would be treated as friends. Before long a second plea had to be made to drive out the confederates. It was requested to send the Union people down the Black Beaver Road where he would guide them to his people who would then all be for the Union.
The reference to Black Beaver Road makes things clear. When the Union abandoned the Indian Territory at the beginning of the war they had counted on Delaware to get them to Kansas. This was the trail followed by the "Loyals" to avoid interception.
In the 1930's there was a man who researched Jesse Chisholm. His name was Thomas Ulvan Taylor. He spoke with Jesse's descendants and found the famous scout gathered a group of Union Indians from surrounding areas. Word was sent to all settlements and Indians flocked from all around to an area by Jesse's trading post. They loaded their things onto horses or "travois" (a platform on trailing posts) and made their exodus. There were at least seven members of Chisholm's family in this group. They stopped at what is now Wichita, Kansas where there is a creek still with the name "Chisholm."
The question was now, where did they travel? Did they travel straight north towards Arkansas? Or, did they turn west to the Black River Road?
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Wishing you success in all of your genealogical treasure hunts!
Copyright © 2010 By Cheryl Palmer