Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma

The Great Seal of the Choctaw Nation

Where should I go to prove heritage?

James Thornton James Thornton

posted on August 19, 2010

My grandmother was supposedly half Choctaw indian, I am trying to prove this officially…how should I go about doing so?? I was hoping to maybe get some financial aid but I need to figure out how to prove that I am 1/8 Choctaw.
Thanks for your help!

suzanne hamlet shatto suzanne hamlet shatto

posted on August 19, 2010

in order to enroll with the choctaw tribe, you would have to be directly descended from an original enrollee. the dawes roll was taken 1896-1906 and the applicants’ names are on that roll. some applicants were denied but many were accepted.

are any of your family enrolled?

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.

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.

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.

mississippi choctaw and choctaw tribe explained here:

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

James Thornton James Thornton

posted on August 20, 2010

Thanks Suzanne, I’ll send you an email for that list.

Jonathan S. Chilton Jonathan S. Chilton

posted on August 26, 2010

Hello James:

Like Suzanne advised you must first obtain a CDIB (Certificate of Degree of Indian Blood). In order to do this you must connect to a blood relative of the Dawes Commission Enrollment. Copy and past below link and search the Dawes roll for the enrollee’s number. Instructions at bottom of page.

Next connect to this relative through documentation. Example, birth or death certificates and sometimes marriage license.
These documents must be state certified through the issuing state. You will have to contact the State departments yourself. I was born in Texas so I contacted Austin, Texas. My mother was born in Oklahoma, so I contacted Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. You will need to do this for each document.

Go to the below link for official Choctaw Nation application forms.

As in my case my mother’s father is an original enrollee. So I submitted my mother’s birth certificate which connected her to her father who is an original enrollee (John “Dutch” Spring Jr.). I submitted my birth certificate which connected me to her. I also for clarification submitted her marriage license which listed her maiden name and consequently her married name, my surname.

The degree of Indian blood varies for certain benefits. So you will need to identify the benefit sought and read the instructions on the appropriate application. See link above that takes you to the application forms.

I have a niece that obtained her Nurse degree (RN) through financial benefits at no cost to her. Her CDIB is 5/64 0r 1/12.8. So I’ve heard that you can talk it, walk it, look it, but if you can not prove your blood, you’re not. However, if you can prove a drop, you are.

Good Luck.

Jonathan S. Chilton

Should wish to contact me:

Dallas Strong Dallas Strong

posted on August 19

Hello, Let me ask a question. It appears there is no actual minimum amount of blood that is required for membership just tying your ancestry by documentation is that correct?

suzanne hamlet shatto suzanne hamlet shatto

posted on August 19

if you are directly related to an original enrollee who is enrolled by blood, you are eligible for tribal membership.

this means that if your relative was a freedman, then you won’t be eligible to enroll because the freedman status was created by congress and not related to a blood quantum.

so there is no minimum degree of blood for the choctaw tribe of oklahoma at the present time.

suzanne hamlet shatto