Choctaw Indians

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Choctaw Indian-Pisatuntema in Partial Native Dress with Choctaw Indian Native Hairstyle1909.jpg

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Various Spellings: Choctaw, Chactaw, Chaktaw, Chatha

The Choctaw Tribe is primarily associated with the states of Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, and Oklahoma[1]. See below for at least a partial lists of groups of Choctaw Indians and the reservations associated with each.

The Choctaw Tribe is one of the Five Civilized Tribes

Tribal Headquarters

Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma
P.O. Box 1210
Durant, OK 74702-1210
Phone: 1.800.522.6170


A Muscogean based tribe, the Choctaw is similar to the Creek Confederation. The Choctaw evolved from multiple smaller tribes that shared similar language and culture. The Choctaw were early allies of the French, Spanish and British during the 18th century. In the 1750's the tribe was involved in a Civil War that decimated whole villages. The division was driven by factions affiliated with the Spanish and the other the French. In the 18th century the Choctaw were generally at war with the Creeks or the  Chickasaw_Indians.[2] The Choctaw like all of the Muscogean tribes was a matriarchal and clan culture.[3]

Brief Timeline

1540: De Soto first recorded non Indian to encounter the tribe

1763: with the French surrendered to the British many moved west of Mississippi

1784: Treaty with Spain

1786: Treatyof Hopewell

1792: Treaty talks with Spain and United States

1801: Treaty of Fort Adams

1802: Treaty of Fort Confederation

1803: Treaty of Hoe Buckintoupa

1805: Treaty of Mount Dexter

1816: Treaty of Fort St. Stephens

1820: Treaty of Doak's Stand; ceded some land

1825: Treaty of Washington City

1825: Tribal population: 21,000 (Mississippi and Alabamaa) reported by T. C. Mc Kenny- Indian Office

1830: Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek, * (Article 14 - removal)

1831-1833: First of Five Civilized Tribes forced from their homeland. Removed to Indian Territory.

1838: First testimonies taken in what is known as the Net Proceeds Case.

1844: Second set of testimonies taken in what is known as the Net Proceeds Case.

1855:Treaty with the Chickasaw, gives Chickasaw nation their own land from lands of the Choctaw.

1856: Annuity Roll (Census) of the Choctaw and Chickasaw as a result of the treaty of 1855.

1867: Tribal population: 22,500; reported  by Commissioner of Indian Affairs.

1875: Testimonies taken to determine heirs for the monies won from the Net Proceeds Case.

1889: Second set of testimonies to determine heirs for the monies from the Net Proceeds Case.

1910: Tribal population: 14,551 in Oklahoma, and 15,917 in other states

1918: Choctaw Indian Agency in Philadelphia, Mississippi established

1945: Mississippi Band of Choctaw Federaly recognized

World War I and II: the U.S. Military used members of the Choctaw Nation for secure communications. They became the first code-talkers

Additional References to the History of the Tribe

Frederick Webb Hodge, in his Handbook of American Indians North of Mexico, gave a more complete history of the Choctaw  tribe, with estimations of the population of the tribe at various time periods. Additional details are given in John Swanton's The Indian Tribes of North America.


Oklahoma: Latimer and Pushmataha counties

Mississippi: Neshoba, Newton, Leake, Scott, Jones, Attala, Kemper, Winston counties

Groups or Parts of the Choctaw Tribe and Their Reservations

Choctaw Nation (Oklahoma)

Jena Band (Louisiana)

Mississippi Band


Records From the Choctaw Nation, Indian Territory, Oklahoma. (census, Cemetery Records, Church Records, Military and other records). FHL Film 1666451 (first of 90 microfilm reels)

Joe R. Goss. A Complete Roll of all Choctaw Claimants and their Heirs. Reprint. Originally published: St. Louis, MO : Robt. D. patterson Stationary Co., 1889. FHL Book 970.3 C451g

Agency Records

Census Records

  • 1830 also included in American State papers, Vol 7. This is in most libraries or is located online at
  • 1855 Cooper Roll of Eastern Choctaw  Families living East of the Mississippi River in the states of Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama.  (roll contains: names of heads of families, place of residence, and numbers of men, women, and children in families)
  • 1855 Annuity Roll, first census of all individuals within a household. Actually done in 1856. Located at the Oklahoma Historical Society.
  • ''1868 ''''''Census of Cedar County, Choctaw Nation located within the Choctaw Nation Collection, University of Oklahoma. View online at
  • 1885 Census of the Choctaw Nation. Every name in household is included on this census. This can be viewed in two places online, both for a fee. It is found under the rolls U.S. Indian Census Rolls, and under the category of Union. It is searchable by name (be careful of spelling) on Ancestry.comand browseable only on  You can also order transcriptions by county from the Bryan County Heritage Association, Bryan, Oklahoma.
  • 1893 Census/Annuity Roll (for both Choctaw and Chickasaw) for Leased District monies. Referred to in several Dawes files, I have been unable to locate this film. I have been told it may be in some counties (ie. Haskell) in Oklahoma, but it is not listed in the NARA or the OHS contents.
  • 1896 Census (cemetery, church, and marriage1897-1901, 1907-1910)FHL Film: 1206500 second filming FHL Film:488191
  • The Census of Atoka County, 1885, Choctaw Nation, Indian Territory. by James P. Cummings. Mesquite, Texas, 1976. FHL Book 970.1 Al#86[1]
  • There are miscellaneous censuses recorded on three rolls of microfilm from the OHS, included in the inventory for the Church of Ladder Day Saints and also at the Oklahoma Historical Society and Arkansas HIstorical Commission. All three rolls cover different counties of the Choctaw nation, and have the 1896 census transcribed, and in some cases the original. The other censuses on the rolls vary to undated or dated, and are heads of  household only for the most part.
  • NARA office Fort Worth has microfilm of Muster rolls for various dates prior to 1855. 
Tribe Agency Location of Original Records

Post - 1885 Census M595 RG 75 Rolls 693

Roll Number




Choctaw Union Agency - Muskogee Area 1875-80 Washington D.C. and Fort Worth Roll 685 -
Choctaw Mississippi Choctaw, Philadelphia, Mississippi, 1926-39 Washington D.C. Rolls 15, 41-42 FHL Films: 57422-574201


Tribe Agency Location of  Original Records

Pre-1880 Correspondence

M234 RG 75 Rolls 962

Roll Number


Film Number

Choctaw Choctaw Agency,1824-76 Washington D.C. Rolls 169-96 -
Choctaw Jones Academy, Hartshorne, 1901-53 Fort Worth - -
Choctaw Union Agency-Muskogee Area, 1875-80 Washington D.C. and Fort Worth Rolls 865-77 -
Choctaw, Mississippi Choctaw, Philadelphia, Miss., 1926-39 Washington D.C. - -

Enrollment Records

  • Dawes Commission Enrollment Records
  • Dawes files can be viewed online or on www. While is free, they do not have a search function, it is browse only. There are two parts to each dawes case. The enrollment card (Dawes Card) and the packet. In many cases the packet will be empty. In cases of some of the rejected files, there are numerous pages, but referenced information may be absent. Accessgenealogy has a transcription of the dawes cards available to search and a list of final enrollee's listed on the dawes Records.

Land Records

Choctaw certificates of ownership in Boone County, Arkansas. FHL Film: 1031068 item 33

The land records for Choctaw lands in Mississippi is found at the National Archives, in Washington, D.C. This collection is indexed by name. 

Some cases of land that are disputed within Mississippi are located at county courthouses. 

Allotments from the Dawes are found in the county the land was located in in Oklahoma.


Choctaw Community News, 1969-1973. FHL Film: 965784 item 5 and FHL Film: 979257 item 9

Bishnik, available on the website for the Choctaw Nation.

Removal Records

  • 1847 Muster Roll of Big Black River Band (arrived at Fort Coffee)
  • 1847 Ha Cubbees Band Muster Roll (arrived at Fort Coffee)
  • There are two books by Monty Olsen (available from Bryant County Heritage Association) on Choctaw emigration muster rolls.
  • Betty Wilshire also wrote a book on Choctaw muster rolls. It is available from various vendors.
  • National Archives (NARA) has the information on emigration/muster rolls and not the Oklahoma Historical society. Check with the NARA to see if the holdings are in Fort Worth, Texas or Washington, D.C.


Superintendent of Indian Trade. Records of the Choctaw Trading house 1803-1824. FHL Films: 1025085-1025090


  • 1783 January 3, at Hopewell
  • 1796 June 29, with Creek &
  • December 17, 1801, at Fort Adams
  • 1802 October 17, at Fort Confederation
  • 1803
  • 1805 November 16, at Mount Dexter
  • October 27, 1805, Chickasaw
  • August 9, 1814,
  • 1816October 24,
  • 1820 October 18 near Doaks Stand
  • 1825 January 20, at Washington
  • February 12,1825, Creek
  • May 6, 1828, - Cherokee
  • 1830 September 27, at Dancing Rabbit Creek
  • February 14, 1833,
  • 1835 August 24, at Camp Holmes, with Comanche
  • 1835 January 17, at Doaksville
  • 1837- Chickasaw
  • 1854 November 4, at Doaksville,  with Chicksaw
  • 1855 June 22, at Washington, with Chickasaw
  • September 13, 1855, at Fort Smith-unratified
  • 1865 Cherokee and other Tribes in Indian Territory with Comanche and Kowa
  • 1865
  • July 4, 1866, with Delaware
  • 1866
  • August 28, 1866, at Washington

Vital Records

Indian Pioneer Papers

In 1936, the Oklahoma Historical Society and University of Oklahoma requested a writer's project grant from the Works Progress Administration (WPA) in which interviews would be conducted with early settlers in Oklahoma who had lived on Indian land. More than 100 writers conducted over 11,000 interviews and were asked to "call upon early settlers and (record) the story of the migration to Oklahoma and their early life here."[4] The University of Oklahoma Western History Collection has digitized the Indian Pioneer Papers which consists of approximately 80,000 indexed entries arranged alphabetically by personal name, place name, or subject. [5] An index to the Indian Pioneer Papers may also be found at OkGenWeb Oklahoma Genealogy. A separate index of Indians interviewed, including the Choctaw, may be viewed at: “Indians in the Indian Pioneer Papers” Some of the surnames from the Choctaw tribe found in the collection are: Anderson, Baker, Beam (Stevens), Bond, Homer/Homma (Latimer), Jones (Choate), Kemp, Labor (Airington), Moore, Miashintubbee.

  1. Indian Entities Recognized and Eligible To Receive Services From the United States Bureau of Indian Affairs, Federal Register, Vol. 67, No. 134, 12 July 2002 Available online
  2. O'brien, Greg, "Choctaws in a Revolutionary Age", University of Nebraska Press, 2005
  3. Swanton, John R. "The Indian Tribes of North America" Smithsonian Institute, Bulletin 514.
  4. .” Blackburn, Bob L. "Battle Cry for History: The First Century of the Oklahoma Historical Society." n.d. Oklahoma Historical Society. 5 Oct. 1998.
  5. The University of Oklahoma Western History Collections

Important Web Sites

Wikipedia has more about this subject: Choctaw


  • Guide to Federal Records in the National Archives; Record Group 75, Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs.
  • Hodge, Frederick Webb. Handbook of American Indians North of Mexico. Washington, DC: Smithsonian Institution, 1906 Available online.
  • Klein, Barry T., ed. Reference Encyclopedia of the American Indian. Nyack, New York: Todd Publications, 2009. 10th ed. WorldCat 317923332; Family History Library book 970.1 R259e.
  • Lennon, Rachal Mills. Tracing Ancestors Among the Five Civilized Tribes; Southeastern Indians Prior to Removal. Baltimore, Md.: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2002. FHL Book 970.1 L548t.
  • Malinowski, Sharon and Sheets, Anna, eds. The Gale Encyclopedia of Native American Tribes. Detroit: Gale Publishing, 1998. 4 volumes. Includes: Lists of Federally Recognized Tribes for U.S., Alaska, and Canada – pp. 513-529 Alphabetical Listing of Tribes, with reference to volume and page in this series Map of “Historic Locations of U.S. Native Groups” Map of “Historic Locations of Canadian Native Groups” Map of “Historic Locations of Mexican, Hawaiian and Caribbean Native Groups” Maps of “State and Federally Recognized U.S. Indian Reservations. WorldCat 37475188; Family History Library book 970.1 G131g.
Vol. 1 -- Northeast, Southeast, Caribbean
Vol. 2 -- Great Basin, Southwest, Middle America
Vol. 3 -- Arctic, Subarctic, Great Plains, Plateau
Vol. 4 -- California, Pacific Northwest, Pacific Islands
  • Swanton John R. The Indian Tribes of North America. Smithsonian Institution, Bureau of American Ethnology, Bulletin #514 Available online.
  • Waldman, Carl. Encyclopedia of Native American Tribes. New York, New York: Facts on File, 2006. 3rd ed. WorldCat 14718193; Family History Library book 970.1 W146e 2006.