Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma

The Great Seal of the Choctaw Nation

Mary Claud Park

Valerie Valerie

posted on November 28, 2011

Did anyone know Mary Claud Park? My father was born in Pheonix Arizonia and his orginal birth certificate list Mary Claud Park as his mother. In all our research the only Mary Claud Park we can find leads us back to the one from Durrant. I have located the Census on line that has her and her mother as Choctaw mixed blood 43-4 what would that make us? Her mothers Headstone says Dixie Steele Park not sure if Steele was her maiden name. If they have any family left or if there is anyone who would have pictures of Mary or Dixie please we would love to see them.
Thank you in advance

James H. Lint James H. Lint

posted on November 29, 2011

My name given at birth was Robert Thomas McGee per my adoption papers. Birth Father listed as Edward McGee and birth Mother as MARY CLAUDE PARK. No other information regarding birth parents is on the adoption certificate. Even though I was adopted in Phoenix, AZ, search for my birth Mother takes me to a Mary Claude Park born on Aug. 4th, 1922 in Durant, OK and died on June 5th, 1995 in Durant, OK. She was the daughter of Claud Park and Dixie Lee Park (Steele). 1930 Census shows Dixie & Mary as mixed blood – Choctaw. Both Claud and his wife Dixie were born in Texas. Both died in Durant and are buried in Highland Cemetary. Cemetary records show Claud’s DoB as 1/13/1896 and DoD as 1/23/1944. They also show Dixie’s DoB as 9/25/1900 and DoD as 5/2/1994. It appears that Mary Claude Park never married and had no other siblings that I have been able to locate. Would appreciate any help in finding out more info on the Park family.

suzanne hamlet shatto suzanne hamlet shatto

posted on November 30, 2011

if mary claude park’s parents were b. TX, then they were probably mississippi choctaw. they might have applied for enrollment in TX or elsewhere. look for a tribe near where they lived. if they didn’t apply for enrollment, they might not have disclosed their heritage.

dixie lee steele b. 9/25/1900 TX m. claud park b. 1/13/1896 TX

i don’t see that either family applied for enrollment to the five major tribes in oklahoma. there were 63 tribes in oklahoma at the time.

Name: Dieve Park
[Dixie Park]
Birth Year: abt 1901
Home in 1930: Durant, Bryan, Oklahoma
View Map
Relation to Head of House: Wife
Spouse’s Name: Claud Park


Military Service:

Rent/home value:

Age at first marriage:

Parents’ birthplace:

View image
Neighbors: View others on page
Household Members:
Name Age
Claud Park 36
Dieve Park 29
Mary L Park 7
mary was b. OK, claud and dixie was b. TX. claud was working in the post office and they rented a house. this indicates that they probably were not enrolled, as neither had an allotment of land.

Name: Claud Park
Age: 23
Birth Year: abt 1897
Birthplace: Texas
Home in 1920: Bokchito, Bryan, Oklahoma
Race: White
Gender: Male
Relation to Head of House: Son
Marital Status: Single
Father’s Name: Eligah B Park
Father’s Birthplace: Mississippi
Mother’s Name: Fannie N Park
Mother’s Birthplace: Mississippi
Able to Read: Yes
Able to Write: Yes
Neighbors: View others on page
Household Members:
Name Age
Eligah B Park 49
Fannie N Park 44
Claud Park 23
Ruth Park 21
Fred Park 18
Robert Park 9
Jauanita Park 6
Source Citation: Year: 1920;Census Place: Bokchito, Bryan, Oklahoma; Roll: T625_1454; Page: 3A; Enumeration District: 27; Image: 507.

very probably mississippi choctaw.

you should gather your documents: death certificate from the state where she passed away, obituary from historical newspapers accessed through your local public library or state historical society or state archives. if you get stuck, you can access the social security application of a deceased relative, which would give you dates, locations, parents.

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

Patricia (O'Dea) Kelley Patricia (O'Dea) Kelley

posted on February 7, 2012 and updated on February 8, 2012

James, your birth-mother was a dear friend to my grandmother Ruth Abbott O’Dea and my aunt Irene O’Dea Byrd. Mary Claud was a sweet woman, member of the First Christian Church where you might find photos/info, and had medium brown hair. My sister and I are trying to find pictures for you. Try yearbooks from Southeastern State College, now Southeastern OK State University located in Durant. I will also check with a woman who is a local historian to see if she knew Mary Claud first-hand.

Sim Hanks-Morgan Sim Hanks-Morgan

posted on November 28, 2014

I knew Mary Claud very well. She was a sweet woman and she worked at Washington Irving with my mom for many years. I might have some pictures of her too.

Edward Brown Edward Brown

posted on April 27, 2015

1930 Census:
150. Column 12. Color or race.-Write “W” for white, “B” for black; “Mus” for mulatto; “In” for Indian; “Ch” for Chinese; “Jp” for Japanese; “Fil” for Filipino; “Hin” for Hindu; “Kor” for Korean. For a person of any other race, write the race in full.
151. Negroes.-A person of mixed white and Negro blood should be returned as a Negro, no matter how small the percentage of Negro blood. Both black and mulatto persons are to be returned as Negroes, without distinction. A person of mixed Indian and Negro blood should be returned a Negro, unless the Indian blood predominates and the status as an Indian is generally accepted in the community.
152. Indians.-A person of mixed white and Indian blood should be returned as Indian, except where the percentage of Indian blood is very small, or where he is regarded as a white person by those in the community where he lives. (Se par. 151 for mixed Indian and Negro.)
153. For a person reported as Indian in column 12, report is to be made in column 19 as to whether “full blood” or “mixed blood,” and in column 20 the name of the tribe is to be reported. For Indians, columns 19 and 20 are thus to be used to indicate the degree of Indian blood and the tribe, instead of the birthplace of father and mother.
154. Mexicans.-Practically all Mexican laborers are of a racial mixture difficult to classify, though usually well recognized in the localities where they are found. In order to obtain separate figures for this racial group, it has been decided that all person born in Mexico, or having parents born in Mexico, who are not definitely white, Negro, Indian, Chinese, or Japanese, should be returned as Mexican (“Mex”).
155. Other mixed races.-Any mixture of white and nonwhite should be reported according to the nonwhite parent. Mixtures of colored races should be reported according to the race of the father, except Negro-Indian (see pa