Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma

The Great Seal of the Choctaw Nation

William E. Porter

Marisa Henderson Marisa Henderson

posted on August 4, 2011

I have recently started tracing my heritage back and I have come to a stump in the road. After my father passed last year I found our papers that he had submitted and registered us with the MaChi Creek tribe in South Alabama. Although, after looking more in depth at these papers I am not positive that we are Creek.

I have traced my roots from myself to my father (Gary Leon Henderson) to his mother (Opal Renner 1918-2006) to her mother (Ethel Porter 1887-1974) and to her father (William E. Porter born 1861)

I have always been told that Ethel Porter was full blood native american making me 1/8th american indian.

I have a copy of the July 1900 census with the below information:
State: Indian Territory
County: Chickasaw Nation
Enumeration District No: 166
Sheet No.: 19 – B
Supervisors District No.: 73
Starting on line 93 it lists
William E. Porter – Dad – April 1861
Ethel Porter -Daughter – May 1887
Thomas B Porter – Son
Hermina Porter – Daughter – July 1893
Dessie Porter – Son – October 1898
Arbell Porter – Daughter – November 1899
Albert Wyatt – S.Son – Aug 1879

It also lists that William Porter was born in Minnesota, his father was born in Canada, and his mother was born in Minnesota.

Ethel Porter was born in Texas which explains the close proximity to the Chickasaw Nation. Her children and grandchildren were all born in Seymour, TX.

The names Cherokee, Creek, Choctaw, and Chickasaw have been thrown around my whole life, but I would really like to figure out exactly what I am. If anyone has any information that might be able to help, I would really appreciate it. Thanks!



suzanne hamlet shatto suzanne hamlet shatto

posted on August 4, 2011

i’m pretty sure william porter was not choctaw, as choctaw (and the other tribes in your post) were southeastern tribes. he could be a canadian native or even a native from minnesota. you would have to search the location, tribe native for tribes in that location.

a single census record is not much information about your family. this is a common surname. did you find them 1880-1930 other than this record?

ethel is more likely one of the southeastern tribes, as she was from texas. this suggests her mother might have been native. and this is a second marriage for william.

you don’t indicate who might be native in this family.

you don’t indicate who ethel married, her children. this website is the choctaw tribe in oklahoma.

i don’t see your ethel on the dawes roll.

maybe you should find out where she was born. if she was alive 1/1/1937 she would have filed a social security application. she would have had to file a birth certificate or delayed birth certificate in order to apply. the state vital records or state archives would probably have that. you have to ask for both records, as many offices keep records chronological and if you don’t tell them it might be a delayed birth certificate too, then they wouldn’t find it.

her death certificate might help. state vital records for that. cemetery records might be online, and maybe an obituary – see your local public library/interlibrary loan for that.

state archives, state genealogy society, state historical society might also be helpful.

you should first find genealogy records and then attempt to find native records. doing this process from native records to genealogy records is often not very fruitful.

many people lived in native territory. the whole state was native territory. and there had been land rushes. there were over a million people living in oklahoma/indian territory in 1900 but only 150,000 or so applied for enrollment.

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

HendersonJ HendersonJ

posted on January 29, 2015

I am a descendant of William E. Porter and have also been researching
..48-315 PORTER, DESSIE SON W M OCT 1898 1 IT

48-315 PORTER, ETHEL D W F MAY 1887 13 TX MI MO


48-315 PORTER, ISBELL D W F NOV 1899 0 IT

319-325 PORTER, MARY E WF W F JAN 1851 49 M-32 AR MO AR O-CHILD



I also found a Dick porter 48-315 was a bdr border assuming canada.. He was 59 when enrolled unsure of relation assuming some of Williams children lived on IT with a relative.
William E. Porter # 8319 Roll# 19334 IT stands for Indian Territory
Isbell incorrectly spelled Arbell is correct and Dessie is also spelled incorrect Dossie aka Doss. Thomas Perry Porter b. 1888
So the numbers 48-315 are my descendants and found they are full blood cherokee. They lived in chickasaw nation.
William E. Porters father was Thomas B. Porter born 1837 mn-canada-mn died Abillene municipal cemetery Texas 1910 with his second wife Aseneth Bell Porter. Still unsure where native blood is from we can not find the first wife of William or Thomas ..
The other names I am not sure if they are Williams relatives with same number
Dick Porter 59 Male Full Card #8319 Cherokee by Blood Roll #19333
William Porter 15 Male Full Card #8319 Cherokee by Blood Roll #19334
Wolfe Porter 12 Male Full Card #8319 Cherokee by Blood Roll #19335
Sarah Porter 10 Female Full Card #8319 Cherokee by Blood Roll #19336
Any further information would be of some help..

suzanne hamlet shatto suzanne hamlet shatto

posted on January 29, 2015

i cannot see the picture that was at the top of this message thread. apparently jpg was an unexpected format. the tribe would have to fix this, i cannot.

i do not know what your 48-315 type codes are. there are a lot of abbreviations used in this post and i have no way of knowing what they mean. is this a 1900 census notation?
i don’t know what “bdr border assuming canada” means. if you are trying to do genealogy by phone, it will be very difficult for the reader, difficult for you to open all websites.

most people don’t realize that the dawes roll that many refer to is an index of names of applicants to one of the five major tribes taken 1896-1906 in indian territory/oklahoma. this was a formal procedure where the applicant offered documents and testimony. so just finding a common name is not helpful. you need to look at all names in the family group/card# and match them with your family. if they are not the same as your family, then it is not your family.

i do not know why you think these people are the same people who are on card#8319. they do not match. rather, william and dick porter are common names.

please explain how you think wolfe porter and sarah porter are the same people as in the census of 1900.

Native American Data for Wolfe Porter

Name: Porter, Wolfe
Tribe: Cherokee
Record Type: enrollment
Age: 12
Sex: M
Enrollment Type: BB (By Blood)
Blood %: FULL
Card No.: 8319
Roll No.: 19335

Credit belongs to the staff of SW National Archives, Fort Worth, Texas, who compiled the names from the Dawes Enrollment Cards for its National Archives
Others with this Family:
Surname First Name Type Sex Age Blood %
Porter Quakie P (Parent) F
Tsiyalata P (Parent) F
Unckasi P (Parent) M
Porter Dick BB (By Blood) M 59 FULL
Porter William BB (By Blood) M 15 FULL
Porter Wolfe BB (By Blood) M 12 FULL
Porter Sarah BB (By Blood) F 10 FULL

how does this family relate to the 1900 census?

suzanne hamlet shatto

suzanne hamlet shatto suzanne hamlet shatto

posted on January 29, 2015

this is the 1900 census record of the people on that dawes record:
NAME: Dick Porter
AGE: 58
BIRTH DATE: abt 1842
BIRTHPLACE: Indian Territory, Oklahoma
HOME IN 1900: Township 13, Cherokee Nation, Indian Territory
RACE: Indian (Native American)
SPOUSE’S NAME: Peggie Porter
OCCUPATION: View on Image
NEIGHBORS: View others on page
Dick Porter 58
Peggie Porter 48
Emma Porter 28
Nancy Porter 18
William Porter 13
Wool Porter 10
Sarah Porter 8
Source Citation
Year: 1900; Census Place: Township 13, Cherokee Nation, Indian Territory; Roll: 1846; Enumeration District: 0043; FHL microfilm: 1241846

nancy and emma may have married and may be on the dawes roll under their married names.

peggie might be quakie p. porter on that card. she might have passed away.

i think your assumptions are not reasonable.

Reel 0233 Cherokee by Blood 8316-8470
begins on frame 36
i noticed the census card appears to be cut off. maybe the cherokee tribe has a better copy. maybe NARA can give you a better copy.
maybe the oklahoma historical society has a better copy.

according to card#8322, peggie coleman, she is in the penitentiary.
frame 76

suzanne hamlet shatto