CAJUNS, CREOLES, PIRATES AND PLANTERS
Your New Louisiana Ancestors Format
Volume 4, Number 6
TEXAS CHEROKEES: Prior to the forced migration of Eastern Cherokee during the "Trail of Tears," several hundred tribesmen migrated to Texas in 1819. Following a brief stopover in Arkansas and then the future site of Dallas, Texas, the Cherokee ultimately established a settlement near present-day Nacogdoches.
For the privilege to officially establish this settlement, the tribesmen first petitioned the Spanish government and then--following its war for independence--the leaders of Mexico, and, ultimately, the independent Republic of Texas. Despite negotiating in good faith with each regime--including the Treaty of February 23, 1836, negotiated with Texas president Sam Houston--the Cherokee were ultimately driven off their Texas land in 1839. Most of the Texas Cherokee, who had suffered hundreds of casualties, fled to the Indian [Oklahoma] Territory, once again falling victim to a white government attending to real-estate interests rather than honoring prior agreements with Native Americans.
The details of the Cherokee experience in east Texas are described in a legal document filed on behalf of the Cherokee’s descendants by attorney George W. Fields Jr. in 1921. The grandson of Texas Cherokee tribal co-leader Chief Richard Fields, the younger Fields compiled the document to support his--ultimately unsuccessful--suit in the U.S. Supreme Court. Fields was attempting to win compensation for the Texas Cherokee after they had been forced out of Texas.
Unpublished for over 80 years, the contents of Fields' account of the Texas Cherokee experience from 1820-1839 has now been transcribed for publication, complete with affidavits and facsimile illustrations, by Jeff Bowen. The name of the publication is Texas Cherokees, 1820-1839.
In addition to quoting sources documenting the agreements or understandings between the Texas Cherokee and governments in question, Fields' transcript includes a number of newspaper articles published in connection with the suit, illustrations of Chief Bowles and other personalities involved in this episode, correspondence, and a full name index to all the persons--both white and Cherokee--who figure in this forgotten episode in Cherokee history.
This excellent publication comes from the Genealogical Publishing Company, 3600 Clipper Mill Road, Suite 260, Baltimore, MD 21211-1953. The price including postage and handling is $21.45.
MORGAN-CHAPMAN: The Morgan-Chapman Family Newsletter is now in its 21st year of publication and continues to document this family in an interesting way. The latest issue is dedicated to Betty Morgan Munn and will be continued in later issues.
Betty was born in Baton Rouge, and her parents were Thomas Beauregard and Alice Chapman Morgan. This issue takes the reader on an interesting look at her through some wonderful memories of her life.
This issue also includes memorials to Paul Milligan Richardson of Kennesaw, Georgia, and Lucy Lee Miller, who was born in St. Helena Parish and passed away in February of 2012 in Covington.
The Sixteenth Morgan-Chapman Family Reunion will be held at BREC Park on Jefferson Highway in Baton Rouge on Saturday, June 30, 2012. You can learn more about this by contacting Terry Morgan Johnson, 6522 Oak Cluster, Greenwell Springs, LA 70739.
This nice newsletter is published quarterly by M.D. Chapman Morgan, 3656 Linda Lee Dr., Santa Maria, CA 93455-2619. Subscription is only $5.00 per year and well worth this fee. The e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
SEMINAR SCHEDULED: Don’t forget the Louisiana Genealogical and Historical Society Annual Seminar coming up on Saturday, April 28, 2012 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Embassy Suites Hotel, 4914 Constitution Avenue in Baton Rouge. Speakers are Brian Costello and representatives of the Islenos, Hungarian, and Czech communities.
On-site registration is $35.00.
DESOTO HISTORIES: Glenn Crockett Price has written two books that will be of interest to researchers working on lineages in DeSoto Parish, Louisiana. The first one is called Founders & Scoundrels, History of a Town. I was especially happy to find both volumes because they tell the history of Logansport and surrounding areas in such an interesting way. Of course, growing up in this area, the interest was even stronger for me.
I only learned of these when I stopped in to see what it was like to step back in time at the old N.J. Caraway Store. So many of the businesses have closed down in Logansport, but this one just keeps on being the landmark business for this town. It was here that I learned of these two books, and I had to add them to my collection. Knowing so much about the history already, I still found each so interesting that it was difficult to put them down.
Price has featured a lot of his own family here, but then the Price ancestors were some of the first to settle the area. Through their leadership, a town’s government came into place, and they were there to lend a hand in building a stronger future for this town on the Sabine River, where it turns and heads up into Texas. The water of Toledo Bend backs up here now so it looks a lot different from when I was growing up and attending school here.
Price begins his history with a look at the Indians who lived along the river, and he features several pictures of artifacts from his collection. In fact, pictures are a big part of making these books so much more personal and interesting.
One of the more fascinating aspects of life in early Logansport was the period of steamboats and their influence on life and the economy. People, homes, the railroad, and duels are all a part of the early history of this area. Even neighboring communities in Texas are featured, among them Joaquin and Haslam, and, of course, notes on Keatchi, Grand Cane, and Bethel figure prominently in this history.
The second book is called Founders & Scoundrels, Around the Town. This volume deals more with the Civil War memories and research, and quite a bit of info is given on cemeteries, businesses, the yellow fever epidemic, and again Price takes a look at a lot of the surrounding communities.
Logansport is located right at the northern part of the area that was so lawless at one time, the Neutral Ground, separating Spanish Texas and the United States and often referred to as No Mans Land. One of the most interesting areas of this part of Louisiana is Los Adaes.
With so many pictures, this book too provides an accurate look into the past. The people and places are so familiar to me, but I learned so much more in reading these books. Regardless of how much research you do on a given location, there always seems to be more out there just waiting to be found. I certainly found out a lot more about the area of Louisiana where I grew up. Caddo and DeSoto parishes as well as the bordering counties in Texas contain so many memories for me. I never tire of finding out more of the history of this country, and in my years of research, I’ve carried it back, generation by generation, to Kansas, to West Virginia, and to Maryland, and even through the southern states back to Virginia.
It is all there for those who search it out. Finding the answers to all the mysteries make it all worthwhile. If you might be interested in these two books, try writing to Rancho Publications, Route 1, Box 540/365 Bethel Road, Logansport, LA 71049.
FREE SERVICE: Correspondence to this column should be directed to Damon Veach, Cajuns, Creoles, Pirates and Planters, 709 Bungalow Lane, Baton Rouge, LA 70802-5337. The e-mail address is email@example.com. Queries can be any length, and book reviews are printed as space permits, and you are encouraged to take advantage of this free service. All genealogical/historical/preservation books are reviewed in this column format, but a review copy is necessary for this service. Another service is offered here too. Claitor’s Publishing can serve as a distributor for self-published genealogy titles. Go to their homepage for details on how you can obtain this excellent service. It is a way to get out-of-print books back into the system and definitely is a great assistance to genealogists who may need this information.
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