Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma

The Great Seal of the Choctaw Nation

Seeking a name....

Jon Newman Jon Newman

posted on August 1, 2011

My Great Grandmother (4 time…Gr, Gr, Gr, Gr) was Choctaw named Elizabeth. She married my Gr, Gr, Gr, Great Grandfather James Ainsworth (Hainsworth) in Washington County Alabama in about 1808. That is really about all I know with any certainty about her. I would greatly appreciate any other information…maiden name, her family members, etc…that anyone might have and the means by which I could doucment and verify that information.

suzanne hamlet shatto suzanne hamlet shatto

posted on August 1, 2011

this time is WELL back in time and native records were not well-kept.

you might check with: NARA/national archives and records administration fort morrow, GA office. choctaw was not a written language until the mid 1800’s and the choctaw have no records, but the war department was keeping records 1800-1900 – you will not be happy with the few records that were kept, however, you might find something.

the state archives might have some information.

local history books and historical newspapers might be available through interlibrary loan – see your local public library for this. the church of latter day saints also has research centers near you and some of these might be available there. state historical societies could have some history and newspapers. and the archives might have some.

you might contact the MOWA tribe. she was born in an area that might be in the MOWA area.

your inquiry doesn’t give much information about the mother, father or child. this is a pretty big handicap.

was this your relative?
Alabama Land Records
about James P Ainsworth
Name: James P Ainsworth
Land Office: CAHABA
Document Number: 38373
Total Acres: 39.495
Signature: Yes
Canceled Document: No
Issue Date: 1 Aug 1850
Mineral Rights Reserved: No
Metes and Bounds: No
Statutory Reference: 3 Stat. 566
Multiple Warantee Names: No
Act or Treaty: April 24, 1820
Multiple Patentee Names: No
Entry Classification: Sale-Cash Entries
Land Description:
Source Information:
United States, Bureau of Land Management. Alabama Land Records [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 1997.
Original data: United States. Bureau of Land Management. Alabama Pre-1908 Homestead and Cash Entry Patent and Cadastral Survey Plat Index. General Land Office Automated Records Project, 1996.

this database at often lists the choctaw scrip land grants that were given in lieu of tribal enrollment. so you should also look at the mississippi land records and alabama land records there. if you find a choctaw scrip land grant, NARA would have the land record and supporting documentation.

such a land grant might be under the name of the child, the name of the child’s husband, but you didn’t give any information about that, so i cannot search for it.

your local public library probably has a subscription to the database.

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 submitted 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.

helpful information about tribal enrollment

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

freedmen info:
You can ONLY apply for Choctaw Nation Membership, AFTER you have obtained a CDIB card proving your Choctaw Blood lineage to a direct ancestor who actually enrolled, BY BLOOD. Freedmen DID NOT enroll By Blood. When US Congress closed the Final Dawes Commission Rolls, there were no provisions granting Freedmen any benefits after the Dawes Commission closed. The tribe Constitution states BY BLOOD. however, the documents (application, census card and testimony) may help you find out more about your heritage.

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:

chickasaw historical society 22
Historic Preservation and
Repatriation Office
Phone: (580) 272-5325
Fax: (580) 272-5327
2020 E. Arlington, Suite 4, Ada, OK 74820
send mail to: P.O. Box 1548, Ada, OK 74821

chickasaw tribe
Chickasaw Nation Headquarters
520 East Arlington, Ada, OK 74820
Phone (580) 436-2603
Mailing address: P.O. Box 1548, Ada, OK 74821

chickasaw genealogy archive center 23
Tribal Library
Phone: (580) 310-6477
Fax: (580) 559-0773
1003 Chamber Loop, Ada, OK 74820
send mail to: P.O. Box 1548, Ada, OK 74821
oklahoma historical society

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

suzanne hamlet shatto suzanne hamlet shatto

posted on August 2, 2011

if you have a marriage date, do you have a marriage location? copy of the license?

do you have a copy of the death certificate, notice or obituary? do you have a cemetery record? you might find a record at or
death certificate would be at the state archives or state vital records.
a newspaper notice might be in a historical newspaper. your public library, state archives, state historical organization might have these available.

Alabama Census, 1810-90
about James Hainsworth
Name: James Hainsworth
State: AL
County: Washington County
Township: Alabama Territory
Year: 1808
Database: AL Early Census vols. 1 and/or 2
Source Information:
Jackson, Ron V., Accelerated Indexing Systems, comp.. Alabama Census, 1810-90 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 1999.
Original data: Compiled and digitized by Mr. Jackson and AIS from microfilmed schedules of the U.S. Federal Decennial Census, territorial/state censuses, and/or census substitutes.

contact the alabama state archives, alabama historical society, alabama genealogical society for access. the latter day saints might even have this census available. you might also ask about the alabama state census records that are available.