Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma

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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.
http://choctawnation.com/services/departments/community-services/

mississippi choctaw and choctaw tribe explained here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Choctaw_Trail_of_Tears

i have collected many resources over the years. if you want to write to me, shamlet76@gmail.com 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.
James

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.

http://www.okhistory.org/research/dawes/dawesresults.php?cardnum=CC%23%201399%20Page%2024

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.

http://www.choctawnation.com/services/choctaw-nation-applications

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:

jsc1134@aol.com

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

Tom Rhodes Tom Rhodes

posted on September 14

Am trying to locate a connection in my ancestors. I have been told that my ggg grandmother in Alabama was a full blood Choctaw. The only information that I have on her is it is rumored that her American name was Morrison. My gg grandmother was Martha Ann Ormond or Ormand. I believe that her father was John H. Ormand or Ormond. I am completely stuck on this line in my family. Martha Ann Ormand or Ormond married a George W. Rhode or Rhodes in either Alabama or Mississippi. Would sure appreciate some suggestions and/or help in finding further information about the Ormond’s or Ormand’s? tfrhodes42@gmail.com
Tom Rhodes

suzanne hamlet shatto suzanne hamlet shatto

posted on September 14

tom, you should start a new thread so that others can see your inquiry about your ancestor.

george w. rhode/rhodes m. martha ann ormand

no years, no specific location, no children in your post. rhodes is a common surname and first names are very common.

since no child was listed, this means that it will be somewhat difficult to find the family. no documents listed.

this is from an ancestry.com family tree:
George W Rhodes
Birth 1825 in Mississippi
Death 20 Jul 1863 in Shreveport, Bossier, Louisiana, United States

Family Members
Parents
Samuel Henry Rhodes
1785 –

Elizabeth Ann Carr
1800 – 1850

Show siblings
Spouse & Children
Martha Ann Ormand
1830 – 1925

Emma Jane Rhodes

Thomas Cornelius Rhodes
1848 – 1916

Mary Elizabeth Rhodes
1850 – 1916

Martha Sue Rhodes
1852 – 1916

George M Rhodes
1857 – 1896

Dora Meldrill Rhodes
1861 – 1931

Dora Meldrill Rhodes
1861 – 1953

Florence Marie Rhodes
1861 –

Timeline
4 Sources
Birth
1825
Mississippi
Marriage to Martha Ann Ormand
1847
ABT
Age: 22
Mississippi
1 Source
Residence
1850
Age: 25
Newton, Mississippi
Age: 28
1 Source
Residence
1860
Age: 35
Lavaca, Lavaca, Texas, United States
Age: 35
2 Sources
Death
1863
20 Jul
Age: 38
Shreveport, Bossier, Louisiana, United States
Age: 38
2 Sources
Burial
Brushy Creek, Anderson County, Texas, USA

1860 United States Federal Census about George W Rhoda
Name: George W Rhoda
Age in 1860: 35
Birth Year: abt 1825
Birthplace: Mississippi
Home in 1860: Lavaca, Lavaca, Texas
Gender: Male
Post Office: Hallettsville
Value of real estate: View image
Household Members:
Name Age
George W Rhoda 35
Martha Rhoda 30
Thomas Rhoda 11
Mary Rhoda 9
Margaret Rhoda 7
Mary Rhoda 7
George Rhoda 2
Source Citation: Year: 1860; Census Place: Lavaca, Lavaca, Texas; Roll: M653_1299; Page: 208; Image: 425; Family History Library Film: 805299.

1860 United States Federal Census about Martha Rhoda
Name: Martha Rhoda
Age in 1860: 30
Birth Year: abt 1830
Birthplace: Alabama
Home in 1860: Lavaca, Lavaca, Texas
Gender: Female
Post Office: Hallettsville

Texas, Death Certificates, 1903–1982 about Martha Jane Thornal
Name: Martha Jane Thornal
Birth Date: 5 Mar 1829
Birth Place: Mississippi
Gender: Female
Race: White
Age at Death: 96
Death Date: 3 Dec 1925
Death Place: Prairie Lea, Caldwell, Texas, USA

she was a widow, senile at the time of death. mrs. l. l. mcfarland was the informant.

do you have an obituary for her? state historical society or state archives have historical newspapers. see your local public library/interlibrary loan program also.

1850 United States Federal Census about Martha Rhode
Name: Martha Rhode
Age: 24
Birth Year: abt 1826
Birthplace: Alabama
Home in 1850: Newton, Mississippi
Gender: Female
Family Number: 136
Household Members:
Name Age
George Rhode 28
Martha Rhode 24
Thomas Rhode 1
Source Citation: Year: 1850; Census Place: , Newton, Mississippi; Roll: M432_378; Page: 164B; Image: 335.

1870 United States Federal Census about Martha Thornel
Name: Martha Thornel
Age in 1870: 41
Birth Year: abt 1829
Birthplace: Alabama
Home in 1870: Anderson, Texas
Race: White
Gender: Female
Post Office: Palestine
Value of real estate: View image
Household Members:
Name Age
John Thornel 53
Martha Thornel 41
Ira Thornel 19
Columbus Thornel 16
Ella Thornel 1
Emma Rhodes 15
George M Rhodes 12
Dora N Rhodes 9
Florence Rhodes 8
Source Citation: Year: 1870; Census Place: , Anderson, Texas; Roll: M593_1573; Page: 102A; Image: 207; Family History Library Film: 553072.

1880 United States Federal Census about Martha A. Thornal
Name: Martha A. Thornal
Age: 51
Birth Year: abt 1829
Birthplace: Alabama
Home in 1880: Precinct 5, Anderson, Texas
Race: White
Gender: Female
Relation to Head of House: Wife
Marital Status: Married
Spouse’s Name: John H. Thornal
Father’s Birthplace: South Carolina
Mother’s Birthplace: South Carolina
Neighbors: View others on page
Occupation: Keeping House
Cannot read/write:

Blind:

Deaf and Dumb:

Otherwise disabled:

Idiotic or insane:

View image
Household Members:
Name Age
John H. Thornal 63
Martha A. Thornal 51
Ella Thornal 11
John L. Thornal 9
Florence Rhodes 18
Source Citation: Year: 1880; Census Place: Precinct 5, Anderson, Texas; Roll: 1288; Family History Film: 1255288; Page: 154B; Enumeration District: 005.

1910 United States Federal Census about Martha A Thornal
Name: Martha A Thornal
Age in 1910: 80
Birth Year: abt 1830
Birthplace: Alabama
Home in 1910: Justice Precinct 4, Anderson, Texas
Race: White
Gender: Female
Relation to Head of House: Head
Marital Status: Widowed
Father’s Birthplace: North Carolina
Mother’s Birthplace: North Carolina
Neighbors: View others on page
Household Members:
Name Age
Martha A Thornal 80
Lillie S Thornal 19
N Stevenson Thornal 17
Ella E Thornal 14
Minnie M Thornal 12
Tincy J Thornal 10
Source Citation: Year: 1910; Census Place: Justice Precinct 4, Anderson, Texas; Roll: T624_1527; Page: 9A; Enumeration District: 0018; FHL microfilm: 1375540.

the children are grandchildren.

1920 United States Federal Census about Martha A Thornal
Name: Martha A Thornal
[Martha A Thomal]
[Martha A Thomas]
Age: 90
Birth Year: abt 1830
Birthplace: Alabama
Home in 1920: Flint, Smith, Texas
Race: White
Gender: Female
Relation to Head of House: Mother-in-law
Marital Status: Widowed
[Widow]
Father’s Birthplace: Alabama
Mother’s Birthplace: Alabama
Able to Read: Yes
Able to Write: Yes
Neighbors: View others on page
Household Members:
Name Age
Joseph M Doss 57
Elle T Doss 51
Era G Doss 16
Blanche M Doss 14
Hamilton K Doss 12
Martha A Thornal 90
Source Citation: Year: 1920; Census Place: Flint, Smith, Texas; Roll: T625_1845; Page: 9A; Enumeration District: 92; Image: 867.

John H Ormand
Birth Abt. 1800 in SC
Death
from an ancestry.com family tree.Children of Unknown Spouse
No Spouse
Emma C Ormand

Mary M Ormand
1821 – 1909

John Houston Ormand
1824 – 1892

Martha Ann Ormand
1830 – 1925

Margaret Jane Ormand
1833 –

i don’t see any documents here.

before 1850, females were not identified in census records.

possible sources:
pension record/military. ancestry.com has these.
county probate records, county clerk. sometimes state archives or state historical society has these.
county land records, county clerk.
marriage document. county clerk, state historical society and state archives.
obituary: historical newspapers: state archives, state historical society or your public library/interlibrary loan program
i see the death record doesn’t give much information. do you know the informant?
local history books: your public library/interlibrary loan program, state historical society, state archives.

did anyone attempt to enroll in a tribe? enrollment application usually lists parents.

was there a choctaw scrip land document? bureau of land management records are at NARA.

cemetery record. findagrave.com or interment.net and contact the cemetery.

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 1940 are available, although the 1890 census was largely destroyed.

you will need to know who the family members were 1830-1940 or so, where they were located. a good way to do this is by census records. the first time period to concentrate on is 1900-1930 because most tribes enrolled during this period. federal census records can help you here. you can get access through your local public library – two databases: 1) heritage quest, 2) ancestry.com.

there is a difference between tribal heritage and tribal enrollment.

http://www.choctawnation.com/services/departments/
click on enrollment department. read the FAQs and download forms.

every tribe has a membership list of original enrollees. every tribe has requirements for membership. the choctaw tribe of oklahoma requires that new members be directly related to an original enrollee of the tribe who was enrolled by blood. freedmen were enrolled by congressional action, not blood, so there is no provision for enrolling a member who is directly related to a freedman because they were not enrolled through tribal blood quantum.

i do not know of a tribe that enrolls on the basis of DNA testing. this is because DNA testing does not identify particular strains for each tribe. DNA testing might be helpful to you, though, because it will give you names of people who match your DNA and you might be able to find a common ancestor. there are a few vendors for DNA tests such as FTDNA, ancestry.com and 23andme.com. i took the 23andme saliva test. once you have DNA results, you can upload those results to gedmatch.com, a free website that has excellent tools to match others who might have taken a DNA test elsewhere. upload DNA result directions are on the right side of the main menu, program choices are in the center, DNA information on how to use the website and understand DNA are on the left side.

do you have your relative’s birth certificate, death certificate. state vital records for that. if the birth was before 1940, also ask for a delayed birth certificate at the same time as you request a birth certificate. older vital records might be at the state historical society or state archives.
do you have their obituary? sometimes it will list parents and siblings. see your local public library/interlibrary loan program for that.
do you have a cemetery record? try findagrave.com or interment.net and then contact the cemetery to see if there is more information.
i start from the death and work backwards in time.

for tribal information, you want to get down to the 1900-1940 time period so that you know family members, locations, dates, and names. this will help you when you try to find the tribe.
there is more than one choctaw tribe. CA, OK, LA, MS all have choctaw tribes.
there are 63 tribes in oklahoma but only the five major tribes were on the dawes roll taken 1896-1906 in indian territory/oklahoma. location is important with tribal affiliation because the original enrollees had to agree to live under the authority of the tribe.
many states have reservations and tribes. state historical society, state archives may have more information on this.

1896 map of the choctaw nation showing districts and counties
use this for looking at location in the choctaw census records in the 1800s
in Indian or Freedman?: Enrollment, Race, and Identity in the Choctaw Nation, 1896-1907
Jesse T. Schreier
The Western Historical Quarterly
Vol. 42, No. 4 (WINTER 2011), pp. 458-479
Published by: Western Historical Quarterly, Utah State University
http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/westhistquar.42.4.0459?uid=3739256&uid=2&uid=4&sid=21104532512787
other choctaw nation maps:
http://www.okgenweb.org/~okchocta/choctaw_nation.htm
the choctaw nation and indian territory are locations for maps and census records.

some tribes are still enrolling. the BIA recently relaxed their requirements and there will probably be several tribes that apply under the new guidelines. this means that some tribes may be in the process of applying and enrolling members. you should pursue your heritage in a timely manner because of the possibility that a tribe is trying to construct a list of original enrollees.
find your relative in the 1900-1940 census. this will give you locations, family members, dates that you will need for looking on the dawes roll, taken 1896-1906 in the state of oklahoma/indian territory. the dawes roll lists applicants to the five major tribes of oklahoma. use the accessgenealogy website to do this or ancestrypaths:
http://userdb.rootsweb.ancestry.com/nativeamerican/
get family group/card#, members of the family:
partial names ok. just enter the name.
to see the family on the card, click on the “more information” link.
if your ancestors match this card, then you should look at the dawes application.

http://www.accessgenealogy.com/native/final-rolls.htm
partial names might not be found on this website.
find a possible name, click on the # in the card# column and this will show you the family group as of application.

use the 1900 and 1910 census to match the names. write down the names, card#.

if you don’t find your family, then look at the 1900-1940 census locations for your family, look for nearby tribes. contact the nearby tribes to see if your family had enrolled. find out membership criteria for that tribe. there are tribes in other locations and other choctaw tribes. location is an important factor over whether a native enrolled in a tribe. you won’t find that an original enrollee enrolled in the choctaw tribe in oklahoma if they were living in another state, for instance. if your family was renting in 1910, for instance, they had not received a land grant from one of the five major tribes in oklahoma and were probably not enrolled. there are 63 tribes in oklahoma but only the 5 major tribes are on the dawes roll.

many natives did not want to live under tribal authority or didn’t qualify for enrollment or could not submit satisfactory evidence to a tribe. this is very common. it means that your family is not enrolled in a tribe.

there were a few natives that were enrolled by tribal council approval or lawsuit. i don’t have any way to tell you whether someone was enrolled because of this. you would have to contact the tribe for this information. however, some people have posted this answer and you might be able to use google on your family names and see this.

supposing you find your family in the dawes roll, then look at the oklahoma historical society dawes website and put in the name of someone in that family group that you found on accessgenealogy. this will give you the enrollment # if the enrollment was successful. write down the enrollment #s for your family.

if you found your family on the dawes roll, you might want a copy of the dawes packet. four sources for this:

1) once you have the card#, search here for documents. the website is free at this time:
http://www.ancestrypaths.com/five-civilized-tribes/
arranged by card#. use the slider bar at the bottom to approximate your card#. the packets are arranged in order of card#. usually the beginning document references the card#.

in case this webpage is not available, you can get a copy of the dawes packet from:

1) fold3.com a subscription website but the cost of one month’s subscription is less than the price of the dawes packet elsewhere.

2) oklahoma historical society:
http://www.okhistory.org/research/dawes

3) NARA http://www.archives.gov/research/native-americans/dawes/intro.html

there may be more than one card# for a particular person, depending on whether they were a parent at the time of enrollment. there may also be an associated card# where one decision depended on decisions on other cards.

sometimes a family’s consideration also depends on an earlier decision in their family. so you may have more than one card# to look up.

a dawes packet contains census card, enrollment application, supporting documents and maybe testimony. even if your family was not enrolled, the genealogical information might be of interest to you.

the enrolled members are referred to as original enrollees. if your family had enrolled by blood then you are eligible to enroll in the choctaw tribe of oklahoma. all tribes have membership criteria. if your family had been enrolled as freedman, then they were enrolled as former slaves and their descendants were not eligible to enroll in the tribe. freedman was a classification created by congress for former slaves.

the dawes roll shows the applicants to the five major tribes 1896-1906 in indian territory/oklahoma. if your family applied for this, there would be a census card, dawes application, other supporting documents and testimony. these are located at NARA http://www.archives.gov try the fort worth, TX office.

requirements for enrollment for several oklahoma tribes:
http://thorpe.ou.edu/OILS/blood.html
What are tribal membership requirements?

Tribal enrollment criteria are set forth in tribal constitutions, articles of incorporation or ordinances. The criterion varies from tribe to tribe, so uniform membership requirements do not exist.

Two common requirements for membership are lineal decendency from someone named on the tribe’s base roll or relationship to a tribal member who descended from someone named on the base roll. (A “base roll” is the original list of members as designated in a tribal constitution or other document specifying enrollment criteria.) Other conditions such as tribal blood quantum, tribal residency, or continued contact with the tribe are common.

http://www.narf.org/nill/resources/enrollment.htm

enrollment is a two step process. first you have to get your CDIB card from the BIA to show your degree of blood/eligibility to enroll in a particular tribe, and then you have to apply to the tribe for acceptance, if you meet their membership requirements.

Tribal Government personnel, usually an Enrollment Clerk, located at a regional or agency office processes applications for Certificates of Degree of Indian Blood (CDIB) and Indian Preference in Employment, BIA Form 4432, to anyone who can provide documentation that he or she descends from an American Indian tribe.
http://www.bia.gov/WhatWeDo/ServiceOverview/TribalGov/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Native_American_recognition_in_the_United_States
this article has many resources.
however i find the paragraph on “Recognition for individuals” to be somewhat insensitive.

i think someone should rewrite that paragraph.

What are the most typical requirements for membership?
Each tribe has a base roll which was established, usually, in the early 20th century, listing the members of the tribe at that time. Your first challenge will be to prove direct lineal descent from someone listed on that base roll. Then you must prove that you have the required level of blood quantum – the percentage of your genetic make-up that is native by bloodline. Most tribes require a 1/4 blood quantum – that is, you must be at least one-fourth Native American – but note that the Eastern Band of the Cherokees requires that you be only 1/16 or higher to join, and the Cherokee Nation and Choctaw tribe have no minimum quantum restriction, so long as you can prove descent. There may be other conditions for membership as well: requirements for tribal residency or continued ontact with the tribe are common.
http://freedomcenter.org/_media/pdf/genealogy/16.%20Native%20American%20-%20Tribal%20Membership.pdf

choctaw enrollment, forms, FAQs
http://www.choctawnation.com/services/departments/enrollment-cdib-and-tribal-membership/

trail of tears map and MS/AL reservations:
http://www.oursharedfamilyhistory.com/resources/maps/mappg.html

indian territory maps:
http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~itgenweb/itprojects/census.htm
they need volunteers to help them. contact the webpage owner.
http://www.okgenweb.org/okprojects/xref/help/str-regions.htm

some land records, including freedmen.
http://www.oursharedfamilyhistory.com/resources/helppg.html#hast
as i look at this, i view it as a work in progress, rather than a final index. it is helpful because of the alphabetical listings. includes index to indian pioneer paper interviews. this is a volunteer opportunity also, if you want to help this webpage become complete. contact the owner of the webpage to help them.

obituaries through the oklahoma choctaw tribe is through the history link for the tribe:
http://www.choctawnation.com/history/

social security application for a deceased person:
http://www.ssa.gov/foia/html/foia_guide.htm
form SS-5.

your public library probably has a subscription to heritage quest and ancestry.com. fold3.com is another useful database for native records and military records, but they are a subscription. however, many times, their month’s subscription price is less than the price of a dawes packet. you can google fold3 and your ancestor’s name to see if your relative’s dawes packet is available at fold3.
http://www.accessgenealogy.com/native/final-rolls.htm

http://www.accessgenealogy.com/native/choctaw-indian-research.htm
http://www.accessgenealogy.com/native/indian-census-records.htm
there is an 1860 and 1885 census in the indian territory

accessgenealogy’s collection of information: if you are from another tribe, use the links at the right.
if you are from an associated tribe, see the several possible links on the webpage.

bear in mind that many records are not online. always collect documents, as just the reference to a relative in an index informs you that a document is available.

death records:
death certificate: state vital records or if very old, state archives or state historical society. ask for the person’s name at the time of death. you can look at death indices, such as the social security death index 1964-present for a date of death on rootsweb.com or ancestry.com.
obituary: see your local public library, interlibrary loan program. ask for the person’s name at the time of death. approximate date of death is helpful. if old, state historical society or state archives might have historical newspapers.
cemetery record: try findagrave.com or interment.net. ask for the person’s name at the time of death. if you find a relative, you can click on the county or cemetery to see if others with the same surname are buried there. contact the cemetery to see if there is more information. if you are a member, you can request a photo of the gravesite.

marriage records:
state vital records office, county clerk or if old, state archives or state historical society.

birth records:
state vital records office, or if old, state archives or state historical society. if the birth was before 1940, ask for a birth certificate or a delayed birth certificate. many people had to get delayed birth certificates when social security came into effect because they had to show proof of age. this will be under the name used at the time of birth.

census records:
you will want to search for census records 1940 on down to the birth of your relative. the federal census was taken every 10 years, however the 1890 census was largely destroyed by fire. there are also some state census records and native census records and native rolls. ancestry.com and heritage quest are two databases that include many census records. many native census records kept by NARA (http://www.archives.gov) are transcribed at accessgenealogy.

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. some mississippi choctaw were accepted by adoption or lawsuit.

for those people who do not yet have a card, you should research the 1900-1940 census to know approximate dates of birth, birthplaces, family members. this will also tell you if someone is more likely to be on the freedman roll or as applicants to the dawes roll taken 1896-1906 in indian territory/oklahoma for the five major tribes.

applicants on the dawes roll can be found here:
http://www.accessgenealogy.com/native/finalroll.php
partial names are ok. look at the guide link for explanation of the codes.

when you find a possible name, then click on the card# in the card column to see the family group. if it is your family group, and they were likely enrolled, then you can search the oklahoma historical society’s dawes roll link to get the enrollment #’s for particular family members.
http://www.okhistory.org/research/dawes

if your family was enrolled by council action early in the process or was enrolled by lawsuit, they might not appear on the oklahoma historical society website. you would have to check with the tribe on that.

even if your family was rejected by the dawes process, you may want the testimony, census card, application information for your genealogical purposes.

the federal census will also help you decide which state to contact for vital records.

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
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dawes_Act
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dawes_Commission
wikipedia entries are sometimes opinionated; entered by volunteers.

helpful information about tribal enrollment
http://www.felihkatubbe.com/ChoctawNation/TribalMembership.html

freedmen information:
http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~ewyatt/_borders/
http://digital.library.okstate.edu/encyclopedia/entries/F/FR016.html
http://www.african-nativeamerican.com/8-chocfreed.htm
http://www.okhistory.org/research/dawes

Indian or Freedman?: Enrollment, Race, and Identity in the Choctaw Nation, 1896-1907
Jesse T. Schreier
The Western Historical Quarterly
Vol. 42, No. 4 (WINTER 2011), pp. 458-479
Published by: Western Historical Quarterly, Utah State University
Article Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/westhistquar.42.4.0459
Abstract:
This article examines the standards of tribal membership in the Choctaw Nation (present-day Oklahoma) during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Although forced by the U.S. Congress to make rolls of its members, the Choctaw government willingly used race to trump other considerations when it came to determining citizenship, including long-held cultural practices.

see your local public library/interlibrary loan program for acceess to this article.

if the name is common, you may find too many possible records. this is why you should have good information in trying to search for your relative. i start with the death and work backwards in time. do not make the mistake of trying to search only online records. many records are not online. vital records are very important. if you are having difficulty finding an ancestor, back up a generation and look at the childrens’ birth records, death records and obituaries.

the five civilized tribes book put out by the department of the interior has testimony.
http://books.google.com/books/about/Five_civilized_tribes_in_Oklahoma.html?id=chATAAAAYAAJ
and you can read it online

and these are the microfilms at fort worth TX archives.
http://www.archives.gov/southwest/finding-aids/native-american-microfilm.html

there may be additional records about your relative:
contact NARA http://www.archives.gov for these and other records listed on this webpage.

75.23 RECORDS OF THE COMMISSIONER TO THE FIVE CIVILIZED TRIBES 1852-1919
75.23.1 Records of the Dawes Commission
75.23.2 Records of the U.S. Indian Inspector for Indian Territory
75.23.3 General records of the Commissioner to the Five Civilized Tribes
http://www.archives.gov/research/guide-fed-records/groups/075.html
(Record Group 75)
1793-1989

http://gateway.okhistory.org/
this has a search but you may have to read the whole edition of a newspaper to find your search match.
the search term will be highlighted. the newspapers (location and years) are limited, so you might want to search for the location and look at years available.

http://okhistory.cuadra.com/star/public.html
oklahoma newspaper and archives search. some of these resources may be available through interlibrary loan/public library.
you can try school records in the oklahoma state archives, the oklahoma historical society and NARA.
http://www.odl.state.ok.us/oar/
http://www.okhistory.org/
these two resources might have historical newspapers and local history books. your public library/interlibrary loan program might also have access to newspapers and local history books.

as for stories, you can see if any of the relatives are mentioned in the oklahoma pioneer papers or oklahoma chronicles.

http://digital.libraries.ou.edu/whc/pioneer/
volumes are alphabetical by surname.
if an interview is not online, contact the host of these interviews.

http://www.okhistory.org/publications/chronicles

the tribe has an excellent information to help you. it is found under genealogy advocacy.
http://choctawnation.com/services/departments/community-services/
some obituaries:
http://www.choctawnation.com/history/obituaries/

NARA http://www.archives.gov/ federal records repository. the fort worth, TX office has archives for oklahoma and texas tribes. atlanta/morrow office has archives for the southeast tribes. many offices have microfilmed records for several tribes.

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.

about blood quantum laws:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blood_quantum_laws
calculations about blood quantum:
http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~wishawa4/Menominee%20Indians/quantum.htm

mississippi choctaw and choctaw tribe explained here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Choctaw_Trail_of_Tears
http://www.choctaw.org/

jena choctaw tribe in louisiana:
http://www.jenachoctaw.org/

california choctaw tribe (okla chahta clan of california, inc.)
http://www.oklachahta.org/

MOWA tribe
http://encyclopediaofalabama.org/face/Article.jsp?id=h-1368
http://www.uab.edu/uabmagazine/2009/july/losttribe
http://www.mowa-choctaw.com/

other choctaw tribes:
http://www.aaanativearts.com/choctaw-indians/index.html

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
http://www.chickasaw.net/index.htm

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

http://www.okhistory.org/
oklahoma historical society
marriage records
http://www.okhistory.org/research/library/marriage.html
http://www.okgenweb.org/~okgarvin/kinard/chocmarriageindex.htm

other historical societies:
http://www.daddezio.com/society/hill/SH-OK-NDX.html
some oklahoma genealogical societies:
http://www.censusfinder.com/oklahoma-genealogy-society.htm
http://www.geneasearch.com/societies/socokla.htm

texas tribes
http://www.native-languages.org/texas.htm
http://www.accessgenealogy.com/native/texas/index.htm
http://www.texasindians.com/
http://www.lsjunction.com/places/indians.htm

oklahoma tribes:
http://500nations.com/Oklahoma_Tribes.asp
http://www.accessgenealogy.com/native/oklahoma/index.htm
http://www.cowboy.net/native/tribes.html
http://yvwiiusdinvnohii.net/OKTribes.htm

tribes in other locations:
http://www.ncsl.org/issues-research/tribal/list-of-federal-and-state-recognized-tribes.aspx

some links for the choctaw.
http://www.accessgenealogy.com/native/tribes/choctaw/index.htm
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.
http://www.accessgenealogy.com/native/choctaw-tribe.htm
http://www.accessgenealogy.com/native/choctaw-indian-research.htm
http://www.accessgenealogy.com/native/indian-census-records.htm

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.
http://www.okgenweb.org/~okgarvin/kinard/1860index.htm
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
and you can read this book online. your relatives’ testimony might be in the book.
http://www.archive.org/details/fivecivilizedtr00statgoog
see the menu at left. you can download it. you should look at the enrollment application, census card and testimony. this post will tell you how to do that. these documents will tell you more about your heritage, but it won’t help you if your goal is to be enrolled in the choctaw tribe of oklahoma. some people were classed as mississippi choctaw if the family had a native heritage but didn’t qualify for enrollment in the tribe.

there are 63 tribes in oklahoma but only the five major tribes are on the dawes roll. look at your family’s location around 1900-1930 time period (census will help you there) and see if there was a tribe located nearby. it is possible that your relatives were affiliated with another tribe.

http://www.burlesonstar.net/nationalnews/ci_25815930
changing tribal recognition rules

if they were mississippi choctaw, there is probably a land grant in MS/AL to a head of household called choctaw scrip land. this was given in lieu of tribal enrollment 1830-1880 time period. ancestry.com has a database of the MS and AL choctaw scrip land records, called mississippi or alabama land records. there are other land records in those databases too,, so you have to look at the authority/source cited. NARA http://www.archives.gov has those land record packages.

the mississippi choctaw were not removed from oklahoma. but they were largely rejected for tribal enrollment.

this website might help you in your search. some people are trying to transcribe applications.
http://www.us-census.org/native/choctaw_dawes.html
i do not know what they are trying to transcribe, but this is the volunteer page
http://www.us-census.org/states/graphics/status.htm

and this might be of interest to you:
http://www.accessgenealogy.com/native/choctaw/rights-of-choctaws.htm
Rights of Mississippi Choctaws in the Choctaw Nation

good advice about native research:
http://jenniferhsrn2.homestead.com/research2.html

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.
http://www.searchforancestors.com/google/searcher.html

penny postcards. this is a website that features pictures that were on postcards. click on the state to see the postcards that they have.
http://www.usgwarchives.org/special/ppcs/ppcs.html
if you have a penny postcard, you can click on submissions to add your penny postcard to the collection.

i have collected many resources over the years. if you want to write to me, shamlet76@gmail.com and request the choctaw resource list, i will be glad to send it to you. this list is not different than the information contained in this post and was a collection of information acquired because people asked questions. it is an older list.

you may want to make a heritage book.
http://www.photobookgirl.com/blog/make-your-own-family-heritage-and-genealogy-photo-book/

good family tree software:
http://www.techshout.com/features/2013/22/best-free-genealogy-software/
i use legacy. the free basic edition is great for the beginning and helps you organize.

i am just a volunteer that wants to empower people to learn how to do genealogy.

suzanne hamlet shatto