Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma

The Great Seal of the Choctaw Nation

Jesse Florence Summers

Brian Coontz Brian Coontz

posted on October 6, 2011

Doing some family research, my oldest realative I can remember was my great Grandma Jesse. Jesse Florence Summers was born sep. 24 1888. In the 1900 census her parents James Monroe Summers and Martha Ann (Matlock) Summers were living in township 10 Choctaw Nation OK. Her sisters Ada, Dora, and Stella Summers were born there. Any info or leads would be helpful.

Thank You,

suzanne hamlet shatto suzanne hamlet shatto

posted on October 6, 2011

excellent information.

james monroe summers m. martha ann matlock
jesse florence summers b. 24 Sep 1888 place unknown
ada, dora and stella summers, sisters.

may have been a late migration:
1900 United States Federal Census about Jessie F Summers
Name: Jessie F Summers
Home in 1900: Township 10, Choctaw Nation, Indian Territory
Age: 7
Birthplace: Missouri
Race: White
Gender: Female
Relationship to head-of-house: Daughter
Father’s Name: James M Summers
Mother’s Name: Martha A Summers
Occupation: View on Image
Neighbors: View others on page
Household Members:
Name Age
James M Summers 43
Martha A Summers 40
Thomas W Summers 21
Isaac P Summers 18
James R Summers 14
Lulu A Summers 10
Lily Summers 9
Jessie F Summers 7
Ada B Summers 5
Stella Summers 10/12
Source Citation: Year: 1900; Census Place: Township 10, Choctaw Nation, Indian Territory; Roll: T623_1850; Enumeration District: 180.
james was b. july 1856 KS, parents b. unknown, was a farmer who rented a farm.
martha was b. june 1859 MO, parents b. TN
they have been married 23 years.
ada and stella were b. in indian territory/OK, but the rest of the children were b. MO.

since this might be a late migration, you should look for birth certificates for the children and find out where they lived.
1880 United States Federal Census about Thomas W. Summers
Name: Thomas W. Summers
Home in 1880: Gasconade, Wright, Missouri
Age: 1
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1879
Birthplace: Missouri
Relation to Head of Household: Son
Father’s Name: James M. Summers
Father’s birthplace: Kansas
Mother’s Name: Martha Summers
Mother’s birthplace: Missouri
Neighbors: View others on page
Marital Status: Single
Race: White
Gender: Male
Cannot read/write:


Deaf and dumb:

Otherwise disabled:

Idiotic or insane:

View image
Household Members:
Name Age
James M. Summers 21
Martha Summers 20
Thomas W. Summers 1
Emeretta Snell 53
Source Citation: Year: 1880; Census Place: Gasconade, Wright, Missouri; Roll: 741; Family History Film: 1254741; Page: 539A; Enumeration District: 142; Image: 0395.
emeretta snell is james’ mother.
i can see a matlock family on this census page as well.

this might be a homestead:
U.S. General Land Office Records, 1796-1907 about James M Summers
Name: James M Summers
Issue Date: 23 Apr 1889
State of Record: Missouri
Acres: 160
Accession Number: MO5920__.175
Metes and Bounds: No
Land Office: Springfield
Canceled: No
US Reservations: No
Mineral Reservations: No
Authority: May 20, 1862: Homestead EntryOriginal (12 Stat. 392)
Document Number: 5714
Legal Land Description:
Section Twp Range Meridian Counties
5 29-N 15-W 5th PM Wright
5 29-N 15-W 5th PM Wright
8 29-N 15-W 5th PM Wright

1910 United States Federal Census about James Summers
Name: James Summers
Age in 1910: 58
Estimated Birth Year: 1852
Birthplace: Missouri
Relation to Head of House: Head
Father’s Birth Place: Tennessee
Mother’s Birth Place: Kentucky
Spouse’s Name: Martha F Summers
Home in 1910: Carroll, Texas, Missouri
Marital Status: Married
Race: White
Gender: Male
Neighbors: View others on page
Household Members:
Name Age
James Summers 58
Martha F Summers 58
Annie J Summers 21
Ada H Summers 18
Source Citation: Year: 1910; Census Place: Carroll, Texas, Missouri; Roll: T624_826; Page: 4B; Enumeration District: 0098; Image: 509; FHL Number: 1374839.

if either martha or james were alive 1/1/1937, they would have filled out social security applications. and they would have submitted a birth record to show proof of age. since few had birth certificates at this time, they may have submitted delayed birth certificates.

the missouri state archives might have records on your family.
there are some online records and some records that you have to request.

a death certificate from state vital records, a cemetery record from or and/or an obituary from a historical newspaper might have some information about birthdate and birthplace, parents. often the obituary or local historical books or newspapers can been accessed through interlibrary loan/your local public library.

location is an excellent factor in finding native affiliation. natives often moved together, lived in native communities.
with map

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 agency 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, names of family members. the census records up to 1930 are available, although the 1890 census was largely destroyed. the 1940 census will be public information in 2012.

social security application for a deceased person:

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.

history of the dawes roll
wikipedia entries are sometimes opinionated; entered by volunteers.

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.
you can order the dawes packet from the oklahoma historical society website.

if you find a relative listed on the dawes roll, fold3 may have filmed the record and could be available online.
other resources are NARA
oklahoma newspaper and archives search. some of these resources may be available through interlibrary loan/public library.

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
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 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
other historical societies:
some oklahoma genealogical societies:

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.

this page can help you set up a targeted google search.

these searches will combine several possible search terms and give you the best matches.

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

state archives, state genealogical society or state historical societies might have records about your family.