Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma

The Great Seal of the Choctaw Nation

Descendant of Frank Totten

Maxine Davies Maxine Davies

posted on March 3, 2011

My husband is the gt grandson of Frank Totten b 1862, the s/o Amos Totten b 1818 in Tazewell Co., VA. I am searching for any information on the ancestors of Frank and Amos Totten. I have the membership card information of Frank being 1/16 Choctaw Indian. If their are other ancestors reading this forum, I would be so appreciative of hearing from you with helpful information to complete my genealogy for my family.
Thanking you in advance.

Maxine Davies

suzanne hamlet shatto suzanne hamlet shatto

posted on March 3, 2011

do you have documentation of frank and amos totten?
birthdate/location or historical newspaper or birth announcement in a bible?
date of death/place of death, cemetery record, obituary, will?
marriage record?

when asking for help, it is very helpful to have spouse’s name, children, location, dates. this way people can match records.

if you are looking for native records, the war department kept some records from early 1800-1880 or so. then the department of the interior took over until the tribes became recognized. NARA,. national archives and records administration, has those records.
fort worth, TX office has the records from the southwest and the morrow, GA office has the records for the southeastern tribes. but all NARA offices have access to most of the records on microfilm.

amos totten b. 1818 VA
frank totten b. 1862 place unknown

Dawes Card Information

tribe last first middle age sex blood card roll misc type
Choctaw Totten Alfred 0 M MCR834 P
Choctaw Totten Maggie 0 F MCR834 P
Choctaw Totten Mary 0 F MCR834 P
Choctaw Totten Mary 3 F 1/32 MCR834 MCR
Choctaw Totten Otis 9 M 1/32 MCR834 MCR
Choctaw Totten Arthur 12 M 1/32 MCR834 MCR
Choctaw Totten Frank 34 M 1/16 MCR834 MCR
this family was coded as MCR, which means mississippi choctaw refused. you should get a copy of the census card, enrollment application, and testimony.

see this book on google.
The Dawes Commission and the allotment of the Five Civilized Tribes, 1893-1914
By Kent Carter
you can probably borrow this book through interlibrary loan. see your local public library for that.

the mississippi choctaw were mostly denied enrollment after 1898 or so.

i don’t know if this is your amos:
1850 United States Federal Census
about Amos Totten
Name: Amos Totten
Age: 32
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1818
Birth Place: Virginia
Gender: Male
Home in 1850 (City,County,State): Western District, Tazewell, Virginia
Family Number: 342
Household Members:
Name Age
Amos Totten 32
Rebecca Totten 27
Gideon H Totten 11
Elenor M Totten 8
Rebecca J Totten 5
Rees Totten 2
Source Citation: Year: 1850; Census Place: Western District, Tazewell, Virginia; Roll: M432_979; Page: 240A; Image: 58.

1860 United States Federal Census
about A Totten
Name: A Totten
Age in 1860: 46
Birth Year: abt 1814
Birthplace: Virginia
Home in 1860: Green, Lawrence, Missouri
Gender: Male
Post Office: Phelps
Value of real estate: View image
Household Members:
Name Age
A Totten 46
Jane Totten 21
Harvey Totten 20
Marinda Totten 19
Jane Totten 16
Recey F Totten 11
Recina Totten 7
Eliza Totten 5
William Totten 3
Milton Totten 1
Source Citation: Year: 1860; Census Place: Green, Lawrence, Missouri; Roll: M653_628; Page: 813; Image: 459; Family History Library Film: 803628.

but i don’t know if this is your family because i cannot find a record with frank among them.

and the dawes roll says that frank’s father is alfred.

so i’m kinda at a dead end here.

genealogists use names, dates, locations, children and spouses to match records. if you have a common surname, you need to give more information rather than less. if you post about women, it is helpful to include the maiden name and the married name and designate which one is the maiden name.

start with what you know, gather documentation, then you can go backward in time. so get your birth certificate, your parents’ birth certificates and marriage license and then you can start on your grandparents. if someone passed away after 1/1/1937, they probably have a social security application on file. if you ask a government for a birth certificate, and they were born before 1929, they might have sumitted a delayed birth certificate. death certificates, cemetery information and obituaries are helpful. you can usually get a copy of an obituary, newspaper mentions such as birth of a child or marriage, through the interlibrary loan program – see your local public library for this. i usually start with the death and work toward the person’s birth. military records and pension records can be helpful. census records can tell you where they were at particular times. the census records up to 1930 are available, although the 1890 census was largely destroyed. the 1940 census will be public information in 2012.

first of all, heritage and tribal enrollment are two different things. many times natives didn’t apply for enrollment because 1) they didn’t qualify, 2) they were philosophically opposed to enrollment, 3) they didn’t have documentation, or 4) they were mississippi choctaw and their ancestor had accepted land or benefits in lieu of tribal enrollment.

the dawes roll was taken 1896-1906, so you should trace your ancestors down to that time period. mostly, they had to be living in oklahoma by that time and agree to live there permanently.

2 ways to search:
this will let you enter partial names to get card#. click on the card# in the card column and you can see other names in that family.
other resources on the left and at the bottom of this webpage. native census records and databases are especially useful.
this will give you card# (family group) and enrollment #. they have some native marriage records too. other oklahoma records listed at left.
if the name is common, you may find too many possible records.

the tribe has an excellent information to help you. it is found under genealogy advocacy.

NARA federal records repository. the fort worth, TX office has archives for oklahoma and texas tribes. atlanta/morrow office has archives for the southwest tribes. many offices have microfilmed records for several tribes. note that this web address has changed recently from

mississippi choctaw and choctaw tribe explained here:

jena choctaw tribe in louisiana:

MOWA tribe
MOWA Band Of Choctaws Wilford Taylor 1080 Red Fox Road Mount Vernon, AL 36560 (251) 829-5500. E-Mail:

other choctaw tribes:

texas tribes

oklahoma tribes:

some links for the choctaw.
i looked at the land records and those need a lot of work. i have no information about whether or when they will improve some of these categories.

types of records available for native americans:
pages 366-369 in particular although the entire native american chapter is helpful.
The Genealogist’s Companion and Sourcebook:
Guide to the Resources You Need for Unpuzzling Your Past
Emily Anne Croom
you can ask for these particular pages from your local public library. if they don’t have the book, you can get the pages through the interlibrary loan program.
native american records are discussed in pages 352-386.

Tracing ancestors among the Five Civilized Tribes: Southeastern Indians …
By Rachal Mills Lennon
this book could be accessed through the interlibary loan program also.

always find the state archives. some records are online, some records are not. but many times you can find a record not found in other places. you want to see also about newspaper mentions for obituaries, births, marriages in particular.

check courts for probate, civil and criminal cases, marriage records.

if your ancestors lived on a reservation, they might not appear on a federal census because they were not taxed.
1860 census, indian territory.

this book is a good read about the dawes roll and how they implemented it.
The Dawes Commission and the allotment of the Five Civilized Tribes, 1893-1914
By Kent Carter

good advice about native research:

if your relatives came from a different geographic location or belonged to a different tribe, try searching google for the state and tribes. you might find a contact for a state-recognized tribe or a federal recognized tribe.

i have collected many resources over the years. if you want to write to me, and request the choctaw resource list, i will be glad to send it to you.

i am just a volunteer that wants to empower people to learn how to do genealogy.

suzanne hamlet shatto

Maxine Davies Maxine Davies

posted on March 7, 2011

I really appreciate your reply and all the work you went to to help me. I am not too good at this genealogy search. I like doing it. I am just self taught, over the past 20-30 years.
I do have family records of Frank being my husbands gt grandfather. In fact an Aunt wrote down as follows, France Cigel
Totten b 24 Sept 1862 d 1902. Married to Elsie Caroline Johns b
12 Sept 1868 in Christian Co., MO. d1923 in Rogersville, MO. An other Uncle had written to me that Frank was s/o Amos. There is another Aunt who just contacted me that she has pictures of Frank, the Indian she said. I have not received that information as of today.
I am curious of the name Cigel, very unusal to me. Could that name have an Indian connection?
By Frank’s card, it is MCR 834. Which I find is Alfred and not Amos by the rolls.
I find where Amos was married to Rebecca Wright, d/o Gideon
Wright, she was b 1823 in VA. d AFT 1859. Does not list Frank
as her child. But it says at the end of this post Amos married again to a Jane BFR 1860 in MO. Jane was b 1839 in MO. It appears Amos moved to Greene Co., MO., Jasper Co., MO. &
Lawrence Co., MO. Assuming Frank must of been born in MO.
Frank & Elsie had a daughter, Sylvia May b 1 Feb 1890 and this is my husband’s grandmother. She married James William Marsh. Sylvia was born in Jasper Co., MO. Through other research I have found Frank may of been a lead miner and maybe died in a mine accident or the result of a mine accident.
I would like to find who is the ancestor who would of been full blood Indian, Frank being 1/16th, wouldn’t have to of been a5th
generation grandparent? Not sure if I got that right.
Actually this is about all the information I have.
Really appreciate any helpful information. Thanking you in advance.
Maxine Davies

suzanne hamlet shatto suzanne hamlet shatto

posted on March 8, 2011

cigel might be siegel. i had a relative living in missouri about that time too, and his middle name was siegel and i wondered at that too, since there was nothing in the heritage to suggest why he was given this middle name. i wonder if there was someone named siegel in missouri that people held in high regard.

i don’t know if this dawes card was your family. do the other family members match names and ages? i don’t think it is a good match. no sylvia or anything like that. no wife on the card or maybe the parent mary is the wife? totten is a common name. and your post indicates they were in missouri and maybe not in oklahoma. this does not mean that they were not choctaw, but they might be another tribe or mississippi choctaw. however natives only disclosed their heritage when they applied for enrollment. and this is the reason that i post the family/card # so that you can see the others in the family.

1900 United States Federal Census
about Silvia Totten
Name: Silvia Totten
Home in 1900: Joplin Ward 5, Jasper, Missouri
[Joplin, Jasper, Missouri]
Age: 9
Birth Date: Jun 1891
Birthplace: Missouri
Race: White
Gender: Female
Relationship to head-of-house: Daughter
Father’s Name: Frank Totten
Father’s Birthplace: Missouri
Mother’s Name: Elsie Totten
Mother’s Birthplace: Missouri
Marital Status: Single
Occupation: View on Image
Neighbors: View others on page
Household Members:
Name Age
Frank Totten 37
Elsie Totten 32
Silvia Totten 9
Harry M Pounds 25
Earl D Hasting 25
Source Citation: Year: 1900; Census Place: Joplin Ward 5, Jasper, Missouri; Roll: T623_866; Page: 18A; Enumeration District: 42.

frank is a coal miner. he might be a jr. b. september 1862 MO, father b. VA, mother b. MO.
elsie b. sept. 1867 MO, parents b. MO
silvia b. june 1891 MO
harry and earl are boarders.

missouri state archives might help you:

California Death Index, 1940-1997
about Sylvia M Marsh
Name: Sylvia M Marsh
Social Security #: 552301428
Sex: Female
Birth Date: 1 Feb 1890
Birthplace: Kansas
Death Date: 28 Jul 1977
Death Place: San Diego

1910 United States Federal Census
about Sylvin M Marsh
Name: Sylvin M Marsh
[Sylvia M Marsh]
Age in 1910: 30
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1890
Birthplace: Kansas
Relation to Head of House: Wife
Father’s Birth Place: Tennessee
Mother’s Birth Place: Kansas
Spouse’s Name: William Marsh
Home in 1910: Grant, Richardson, Nebraska
Marital Status: Married
Race: White
Gender: Female
Neighbors: View others on page
Household Members:
Name Age
William Marsh 25
Sylvin M Marsh 30
Frank M Marsh 1
Source Citation: Year: 1910; Census Place: Grant, Richardson, Nebraska; Roll: T624_854; Page: 10B; Enumeration District: 0169; Image: 213; FHL Number: 1374867.

no spouse for frank. i don’t know if they stayed in nebraska.

World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918
about James William Marsh
Name: James William Marsh
County: Nemaha
State: Kansas
Birth Date: 21 Oct 1884
Race: White
FHL Roll Number: 1643726
DraftBoard: 0
he’s a farmer for alvin lear. wife is sylvia may marsh.

Kansas State Census Collection, 1855-1925
about J W Marsh
Name: J W Marsh
Census Date: 1925
Residence County: Nemaha
Residence State: Kansas
Locality: Washington
Birth Location: Tennessee
Gender: Male
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1885
Race: White
Relation: Head
Line: 15
Roll: KS1925_104
Spouse’s Name: Sylvia Marsh
Household Member(s):
Name Age
J W Marsh 40
Sylvia Marsh 35
Frankie Marsh 16
Bealer Marsh 10
Ersert Marsh 7
Andrey Marsh 2
1925 Kansas State Census. Microfilm reels K-1 – K-177. Kansas State Historical Society.

1930 United States Federal Census
about James W Marsh
Name: James W Marsh
Home in 1930: Center, Doniphan, Kansas
View Map
Age: 45
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1885
Birthplace: Tennessee
Relation to Head of House: Head
Spouse’s Name: Sylvia M Marsh
Race: White


Military service:

Rent/home value:

Age at first marriage:

Parents’ birthplace:

View image
Neighbors: View others on page
Household Members:
Name Age
James W Marsh 45
Sylvia M Marsh 40
Beulah M Marsh 16
Ernest W Marsh 12
Audrey B Marsh 7
Source Citation: Year: 1930; Census Place: Center, Doniphan, Kansas; Roll: 699; Page: 8A; Enumeration District: 3; Image: 839.0.

i can’t find them in 1920, but maybe you know where they are.

anyway, i think it is VERY unlikely that the dawes card is your relative.

Maxine Davies Maxine Davies

posted on April 5, 2011

Thanks again so very much. I will do more on asking questions of this Aunt and will ask the Uncle to see if he remembers anything more on this family. He is in his 80’s now, so not really counting on him. I have left so many posts on different forums, not getting too much help from that.
Now I am working on finding who Jane is that Amos married in MO.
That might tell me something.
Again thanks so much. Be in touch.