Trail of Tears
The Trail of Tears
by Betty Carlin, archivist for the Pass Christian Historical Society

     The Indian Removal Act was signed by President Andrew Jackson in 1830.  Tribes east of the Mississippi River ceded their lands for territory in the West.  These included the Choctaws and Chickasaws of Mississippi.  The Creeks signed another treaty stating that no Indians would be forced to move but could go or stay as they chose.  Regardless, four years later they were forced to leave their homes.
     In 1837, a group of Creeks on their way West stopped for five months in Pass Christian.  One of their leaders was Chief Tuskina.  A deed of land given by John Henderson to his daughter Julia in 1847, lists "Chief Tuskina's Cabin" as one of the points of reference to that lot.  It is believed this would have been located on land that is now north of the railroad and east of Cedar Avenue.
     Chief Sam Moniac, another Creek leader whose wife was a sister of William "The Red Eagle" Weatherford, died while the tribe was in the Pass and was buried here.  The location of his grave is unknown.
     A book was published in 1991, called "William Weatherford: His Country and His People" by Lynn Hasty Thompson which mentions Sam Moniac and his death in Pass Christian.
     At least four people from out of state have been trying to find where he is buried during this past year (1994).
     It is strange to think that a town on the Coast could have been a way-station on the infamous "Trail of Tears."  It is hoped that more information about the brief moment in our history will be found as well as the grave of Chief Moniac. (by Betty Carlin)


The reference by John Henderson in  Deed Book 5, page 512 on 8-24-1849
John Henderson Sr., sold for $1 to Julia Post Henderson, his step daughter, the lot known as the Peach Grove Lot, or the Tuskina Cabin Lot
The spelling is different, but quite likely the same as the names listed below in Red.

U.S. Gov't Archival Records


Indian Camp, Creek Nation
July 18th, 1828
The Hon. Thomas L. McKenny
Sir,

We the undersigned being a part of the emigrating party of Indians now on our way for the Arkansas deem it our duty to state to the government of the United States the facts in relation to the treatment of the Indians who is opposed to Emigration. During the time we were in camp near Lewis' Stand horses were stolen from us of which we made complaint to Col. Brearly who was then in Washington City.  The horses we then complained of was actually stolen of which fact we have the proof but they have been recovered.  But when we left that camp almost every night we have had some taken, more or less seventeen in one night. In the morning they were pursued and a part of them recovered.  When they were found the bells were taken off .. with some hickory bark, a flat string, and ropes around their necks.  The whole we have lost and we made the complaint above mentioned is twenty, seventeen of which is entirely gone unless we fortune than we expect. the chief of this party has come this conclusion not to take any from the other party as is Indian custom but to rely on the government for a fair investigation and make the nation accountable for the horses.  We are the people that is in accordance with the views of the government and therefore do expect and hope that you will see that we have justice done us.  It is useless for us to call on the chiefs for Justice for they are offended with us for doing as the government desires.  You are our dependence. We remain your children & c.

Different Towns
Hitcheta

Benjm Lott
John Winslett
Coweta

K. Lewis
Samuel Sells
Seno-way
Chiwackley

Powes Hargo

Chiwackley

Tuskenehah
Thlatch Le Hargo


Alabama
Creek Nation
(Sept. 3, 1832)

We the undersigned chiefs of the Eche,se,ho,ga Town and heads of each family entitled to reserves under the late treaty made at Washington City in March 1832 have come together this 3rd day of September in open council and have agree to request Judge Tarrant our agent to inform our Father the President that all who are hereunto subscribed of our town together with some of other towns heads of Creek familys all of whom are our relations that we wish to emigrate this fall to the Chickasaw Nation and that we met together this spring past, and appointed a delegation to go to the Chickasaw Nation which delegation has returned and has obtained the consent of the chiefs of that Nation for us to remove there for the present as they are all our family connections in that nation and that we are anxious to get together so that when they emigrate to Ar,kan,saw then we will go with them and also to inform our Father the President we wish to start in sixty days or less if we can get of, and that we are in debt here and can't remove without making some arrangements with our reserves to settle our debts we wish our Father the President to suffer us to appoint an agent or attorney of our acquaintance who is Major John C. Webb who is know to our agent to be a man of character and of good standing in whom we have the utmost confidence from long acquaintance, who will be duly & legally authorized by your sanction to act generally every way on our parts in disposing of our lands by legal Power of Attorney and by your honor sanctioning this request our agent or attorney, will be duly authorized to settle all our debts out of the proceeds of our lands which we'll go before him and acknowledge and order him to pay them, and by this arrangement our creditors will consent for us to go without any Interception, our attorney will make us such advances as we need for our passage and we wish him to purchase us some horses to transport our children & baggage.  Otherwise we wish to Provide our own passage and receive our fifteen dollars before we start or when we get to Ark,an,saw if our Father the President would prefer to pay it there, but we wish our Father the President to order us located before we start, but should it not be imminent for us to be located before we start, our attorney will be duly authorized to receive our certificates of location as he is well acquainted with all our old homes and can show the locating agents each residence we leave.  
     But if our Father the President thinks we should be chargeable on the government more than the provisions of the treaty we assure him it is not the case, we wish to go there on account of all our relations being there who emigrated from the nation and if he chooses to withhold from us our fifteen dollars a head for our passage, our blanket & rifle, and one year’s provisions till we reach Arkansaw he can do so as our friends have good crops and will let us have -------  we wish to inform our father the sooner we leave the better for us, therefore, through our agent we ask our Father to sanction this request.   We appoint Tus,ta,n-- in open council to carry this our agent Judge Tarrant by your attention to this you'll confer a favor on your care.
Signed in presence of us
John P. Moore Interpreter
James Moore Interpreter

Addressed to:
Franklin McLemore
Peter Dudley

Name
Title
Marks
No's family
Cobicher Harjo
Chief
x
5
Hillaba fixico
x
6
Arb_cher E Marthlar
Chief
x
5
Opith Harjo
Chief
x
6
Joh hos E holar
Chief
x
7
Tus ke nah
x
7
Soc pa lat ca
x
5
Tomey Harjo
5
Oak fus ka mi cho
x
4
Other signers Deleted

"By a treaty of March 24, 1832, the Creek Indians ceded to the United States all of their land east of the Mississippi River. Heads of families were entitled to tracts of land, which, if possible, were to include their improvements. In 1833 Benjamin S. Parsons and Thomas J. Abbott prepared a census of Creek Indian heads of families, which gave their names and the number of males, females, and slaves in each family. The entries were arranged by town and numbered; these numbers were used for identification in later records."

344 Creek Indians and 103 slaves arrived March 13 and 28, 1835 under the charge of Capt. John Page. They emigrated by land from Alabama.



Rifles and traps given to recently emigrated Creek Indians
June 1835
" We whose names are hereunto Subscribed chiefs and Warriors of the Creek Nation of Indians, lately arrived in the Western Creek Nation from the East, do hereby acknowledge to have this day received of R. A. McGabe, Sub Agent for the Western Creeks the Rifles, Traps, &c. set opposite our names respectively. "

Nos.

Names & Signatures

Rifles

Bullet
moulds

Wipers

Beaver
Traps

Witnesses

1
Ufaula Harjo

1

1

1

1

Jno. Wade
Wm. D Shaw
2
Tuska Eneha

1

1

1

1

"

3
Neha Fixico

1

1

1

1

"

4
Holock Fixico

1

1

1

1

"

5
Halock Harjo

1

1

1

1

"

6
Ac piska Yohola

1

1

1

1

"

7
Yoholo Micco

1

1

1

1

"

8
Co lach ta

1

1

1

1

"

9
Catcha Micco

1

1

1

1

"

10
Co wock co chee

1

1

1

1

"

Total Issued
Others Deleted
122

122

122

123

We do hereby certify that the Rifles and Traps on the above receipt Roll were issued to the Indians against whose names they are Charged and their signatures were acknowledged in our presence.

Given at the Creek Agency, 21st June 1835.


"Muster Roll of Emigrant Creek Indians who have emigrated West of the Mississippi River under the direction Lieut E. Deas, U.S. Army, Disb'g Agt. Ind. Rem'l, in the year 1835 and arrived upon their lands the Third day of February 1836. Subsisted by Captain James R. Stephenson, U.S. Army, Disb'g Agt Creeks for the Quarter ending the Thirty first day of March 1836."
(Note:  Included Tuske Enehar over 50 with woman same age and two females between 10 and 25)


Letters regarding Pass Christian during Indian exportations.


To:
C. A. Harris Esq.
Mobile Point, Ala.
17th June 1837

Sir,
I have the honour to report my arrival at this place with one hundred and eighty Creek warriors; on furlough for one month, where they will return, if directed, by Genl. Jesup to Tampa Bay.  All the sick of the first Battalion were embraced in the number specified above, fourteen women and children refugee Creeks that escaped to the Seminole Nation also accompanied the detachment, making the total number one hundred and ninety four.  An unfortunate movement of Echo Harjo's people under the direction of Lieut. Slone were ordered to New Orleans from some representation made to Genl. Jesup.  They became very sickly there. Genl. Jesup immediately ordered them back to this place again.
      I shall leave here tomorrow for Mobile for the purpose of obtaining leave of the owners of Dauphin Island to remove those people to that place, they will there, all be secure; as we are now situated, the Indians will go out hunting and the people get alarmed; though there is no bad intention on the part of the Indian.  If it is practicable, I will move to this Island and make them as comfortable as possible and then there can be no complaint from any citizen, as it is impossible for them to get from the island unless accompanied by an agent of the Government.
     I enclose you a contract made with the Alabama and Georgia Emigrating Company, to supply the Indians with rations.  As I passed through Montgomery I could not give but three days notice to supply those Indians with rations but no one would offer any price, unless I specified some particular period these people would be subsisted.  This I could not do.  The Emigrating Company's offer was the only bid that was made, there being but one of them present at the time I entered into writing for the moment until I arrived at the Point as I was on my way there.  On my arrival here the contract was made out and signed by the Company but the Steam Boat arrived at the same time.  I was compelled to go on board and did not sign it myself but took it with me, the copy furnished by Maj. Wilson was done for the moment to authorize the company to forward rations forthwith as the Emigrants were all on their way.  It appears there has been some misunderstanding with Maj. Wilson and the contractors about the rations.  A detachment of Indians between six and seven hundred, was ordered to New Orleans.  It put the contractors to some expense as the movement was a sudden one and no time given them to make arrangements for feeding them.
     Lieut. Slone required of them to furnish fresh beef while there, they complied with his requisition, though the market price for beef was 20 cents per pound, but they were unable to get it in the market every morning.   Maj. Wilson required them to furnish fresh beef here, they attempted and made a contract and the beef was brought to the spot but the weather was so warm it spoiled and was lost, a second attempt was made and it spoiled and of course all was lost - to the contractors.  Maj. Wilson contended that they were compelled to furnish fresh beef if it was a dollar per pound, the contract speaks for itself, what the ration shall consist of and when it shall be delivered. I consider they are bound to furnish a portion of fresh beef if it can be procured at any reasonable price.  If it cannot be furnished, such as can be obtained of a good and wholesome quality, the beef must be killed in either Pensacola or Mobile and transported to this place.  If from Pensacola it is forty miles, if from Mobile thirty miles.  One of the Company has now gone to see if they can procure the beef at such a price as will not render the contract ruinous to them.  They are willing to do anything required of them to fulfill their obligations and I assure you the rights and comforts of the Indians shall be strictly observed, and if I had remained here long enough to have arranged matters before I went to Tampa Bay there would have been no difficulty or misunderstanding in the business.  When I received my instructions to remove the Indians to this place I worked night and day to comply with the orders.  On my arrival here I found a letter from Genl Jesup requesting me to come forthwith to Tampa Bay for the space of ten days.  I remained here about one hour when I embarked for that place.  So, soon as I can get time I will give you a statement of my proceedings while there.
     Capt. Bateman and myself arrived here the same day.  There is a great deal of business to do here to keep the Indians under subjection, our number is augmenting every day. If I can locate them on Dauphin Island all will be quiet.  I have a great many arrangements to make for the sick before I can remove them.
     Mr. Dubois, a half breed Indian, arrived here a short time since to see about the second payment for the land and it is now ascertained the business can not be accomplished until the Creek warriors are discharged, there being a great number of them interested and Yeo poth le hola, Chief of the Creeks, will decline in acting until all are present, so the money can be divided in proportion of the value of each man's tract. The Creek warriors term of service will expire on the 14th of September.   I think it doubtful if Genl. Jesup discharges them before that period.  I will render my accounts for the last two quarters and require the other officers to do the same.  They kept their accounts back in consequence of my absence, not being to render them until my arrival.  I shall remain on duty here unless other wise ordered until the duties assigned me require my attention west.   Maj. Wilson will shortly leave here for Tampa Bay, one officer will necessarily be detached most of the time with a few Indians to call in refugee Creeks where ever they can be found.
With Respect I have the honour to be

Your Obt Servt
John Page,  Capt. & Supt of Creeks

**********************************
To: Capt. John Page
Superintendent Creek Emigrating
Pass Christian Miss


Pass Christian, Miss.
31st July 1837

Capt.
     In obedience to your call, I herewith furnish a statement of the deaths that have occurred in my Party since our arrival at Mobile Point, and at this place, the first death occurred on the 20th March, from that to 31st July, 177 deaths have taken place, 93 of which number died at the Point and 84 -- since disembarking at this place.  On 20th July (thirteen) 13 persons died and on the following day (twelve)12, being the greatest number on any one day.
     The attending Physicians Report, I herewith enclose.
I am Sir
Very Respectfully
Your Obt. Servt.
Jno. G. Reynolds
1st Lt. U. S. Mil
& Disbg Agt Ind. Dept.


*************
To: Capt. John Page
Supt and Disbursing Agent
Creek Emigration

Pass Christian, Mississippi
31st July 1837
Sir

Agreeable to your instructions requiring the number of deaths and births that have taken place in the camp of Indians under my charge, during the present month, I submit the following report.
     From the 4th to the 17th July inclusive while stationed at Mobile Point there were four deaths, from the 18th to the 31st of July and since their removal to this point there has been 11 deaths and one birth.
     The above number of deaths are all that have been reported and agrees with the muster roll and also the one birth.
I am Sir very respectfully
Your Obt. Servt.
Alx. H. Sommerville
Asst Agent Creek Removal
******************************
To: C. A. Harris Esqr.
Commr Indian Affairs
Washington City

Pass Christian, Miss.
13 Sept. 1837
Sir,
     I have the hour to report the arrival of sixty Creek volunteers from Tampa Bay; the officer in charge informed me, the remainder are on their way hither; so soon as they arrive, mustered out of service and paid off there will be nothing to detain us from moving.  The sickness of New Orleans can easily be avoided with the aid of the civil authority, to prevent the Indians from straying, we can pass through, with but a few hours detention.
     The mustering out officer and pay master will be here in a day or two. I hope your views as to an early movement will be given as soon as practicable.
I am Sir,
Your Obt. Servt.
Jno. G. Reynolds
1st Lieut. U. S. Mil.
& Disbg. Agt. Ind. Dept.
**************

To: Lt. John G. Reynolds
Actg. Supt, Creek Removal

Pass Christian, Miss.
15th Sept. 1837.
Sir, I have received your note of this date, to the principal inquiry, to wit, whether there will be danger in transporting the Indians through the city of New Orleans, during the prevalence of the fever now raging in that city?.  I will answer, having recently visited New Orleans, for the purpose of purchasing medicine for the sick and witnessing the cause and effects of the disease in one of the hospitals, do unhesitantily find it as my opinion that there is not the least danger of contracting the fever, for the short period that the Indians will remain, before embarking on board the boats.
I am Sir
Your Obt. Servt.
Dr. Edmund Wiedemann
Astg. Phys.

*************************

To: Lt. J. G. Reynolds
Disbg Agent
Creek Emigration

Pass Christian
15th Sept. 1837
Sir

I am note of this morning requesting my opinion in regard to the danger & liability of transporting the Indians through New Orleans to the prevailing epidemic of that City was received.  I cannot conceive sir, that the short period the Indians will be exposed to the atmosphere of Orleans (if the arrangements as expressed in your note are made) can materially effect their health, nor do I believe in their present good health, they can possibly take the fever from so slight an exposure, and I must give it as my decided opinion, that it is neither dangerous nor injurious.
Very Respectfully
Your Obt. Svt.
I. M. Woodfin
Directg Physn
**************************

To: Messrs Wm. A. Campbell
& Wm J. Beatie
Agents and members
of the Alabama Emgtg. Company
Indian Encampment
Pass Christian, Miss.
18th Sept 1837
Gentlemen,
     The Contract entered into by the U. States with your Company, not embracing water conveyance for the Emigration of the Creeks, and it being the positive direction of Maj. Genl. Jesup, Comdg Army of the South, that this party be transported with every ease and convenience as well as comfort. I have to request in obedience to the wish of the Comgd. General; that the Company will provide by the date specified in my communication of the 16th inst. Steam Boats for their transportation, each Boat to accommodate and carry, not to exceed five hundred Indians. The land transportation, as defined in the contract, is such as will render the sick and infirm exceedingly uncomfortable, you are theretofore directed that instead of one Wagon for the number of persons and weight of baggage as expressed in the contract, to furnish two, the best of their kind.
     As it is the wish of the Maj. Genl. Comdg. that every necessary article for the comfort of the party on the Route be furnished, I have to request you to inform me, the kind of provisions it is the intention of the Company to issue, agreeably to the Contract.
I am Gentlemen
Very respectfully
You Obt Servt
Jno. G. Reynolds
1st Lieut. U. S. M. C.Disbg Agt. & C.
****************

To: Lt. L. G. Reynolds
Disbg. Agent
& Actg Superintendant
Creek Emigration
Pass Christian
22nd Sept 1837
Sir,
     I have availed myself of the first opportunity to obtain the necessary information in regard to the number of Indians to be transported on each Steam Boat up the Mississippi River in the present low stage of its water. I herewith enclose you a communication form several owners & captains of Steam Boats which I believe contains the most correct information in my power to obtain, it is founded on several years experience in the navigation of the Mississippi.   I have also consulted Drs Hults and Wiedemann on the subject, the former of these Dr. H. has had some experience in the transportation of Indians, and says, that he has never known more than four to five hundred Indians transported on Steam Boats of seven superficial square feet to every Indian embracing men, women, & children.   In regard to my own opinion on this subject I can say but little, however I cannot differ with those gentlemen whose communication I have enclosed, nor with Dr. Hults they having had much experience in the transportation of Indians & Steam Boat navigation generally.   It is absolutely necessary to protect the health of the Indians that they should not be crowded on Boats, each one should have ample space, and by all means the different apartments should be kept clean & well ventilated.
Very Respectfully
Your Obt. Svt.
I. M. Woodfin
Directg Physn
Creek Emigration
************

To: The Hon.
J. R. Poinsett, Secretary of War
Washington City
Head Quarters, Army of the South,
St. Augustine, September 22nd 1837
Sir,
I received on the 15th instant, on my way to this frontier, your letters of the 25th and 30th of August, and the 2nd of September, and on the 18th your letters of the 6th. The last detachment of the Creek Warriors left Tampa for the Pass Christian on the 11th instant, and I gave orders at the same time that on their arrival there they should be mustered, discharged, and immediately moved westward.
     The Creek Indians had been promised a reward for the captures they should make of Negroes belonging to citizens of the United States.  Had compensation not been promised they would taken no prisoners, but would have put all to death.   I compromised with them by allowing them twenty dollars for each slave captured. They were entitled, agreeably to the promises made to them before they entered the service, to all Indian Negroes and other Indian property captured by them.  To end all difficulty on that subject, I have purchased the Negroes from them on account of the public for eight thousand dollars.  There are about eighty of the Negroes besides Abram's family, and those who are free; some of them, perhaps, may be found on investigation to be the property of citizens. I respectfully ask that this purchase be sanctioned.  The Seminole annuity, it seems to me, might be charged with the amount paid to the Indians for these Negroes, as well as with the reward for securing those who belonged to citizens.
It is highly important to the slave holding states that these Negroes be sent out of the country; and I would strongly recommend that they be sent to one of our colonies in Africa.
     The sum paid to the Indians is entirely satisfactory to them though it is far less than the value of the Negroes.
I have the honor to be,
Sir,
Yr. obdt. servt.
Thos S. Jesup
Major Genl.
***************************
About 2000 Creek Indians left Pass Christian, Mississippi for New Orleans, LA on Oct. 23, 1837.  One of the boats was the "Black Hawk".
****************************

To: C. A. Harris
Commr. Indian Affairs
Washington City
Pass Christian, Miss.
23rd Oct. 1837
Sir,
I have the honor to inform you that agreeably to the arrangements made by Lt. Reynolds, I have this day embarked two thousand emigrating Creek Indians from this place to New Orleans where ample transportation is in readiness to receive them.  Such arrangements have been made by the contactors that the party will remain but a few hours in New Orleans, whence they will proceed with all reasonable expedition to their place of destination.  I shall accompany the first party to New Orleans to attend their final embarkment, where I shall remain until I am joined by the last party which will be on the 25th inst.  Every arrangement having been previously made for the comfortable and speedy removal from this place of the party under my charge.  I deem it most advisable to remain in New Orleans and see Lt. R's party on the way and make arrangements for the reception of my own.
     I have appointed Noah Felton who was formerly assistant conductor under Lt. Reynolds, Conductor of the principal part of his party and I hope it will meet your approbation.  Mr. Felton has had considerable experience, and I conceive every way qualified for the appointment
I am very respectfully
Your Obt. Servt.
T. T. Sloan
Lt. & Disbg. Agent
*************************************

To:  C. A. Harris Esqur.
Commissioner of Indian Affairs
Washington City

Fort Gibson
28th December 1837
Sir,
I have the honor to report this day the arrival of all the Creek Indians in the new Country allotted them, the movement with the exception of the disaster on board the Monmouth has been a very pleasant and agreeable Emigration on the part of the Indians; each party was conducted through the country with a great deal of caution - no complaints on the part of the Indians or the inhabitants of Arkansas for depredations committed; as I passed through the country I promised the citizens every depredation committed this year by the Creek Indians, I would ensure them pay for it provided they would inform me who conducted them; on my return I made all enquiry, no complaint but all pleased in the manner the Creeks were conducted through the country, the extra baggage was also landed at Fort Gibson agreeable to contract and divided by Ho-poth-le yoholo and the other chiefs. I should have been more prompt in communicating to you but my health has been so bad, that I was unable to do so. I am at this time in so low a state of health that I am compelled to keep my bed two thirds of my time. I shall however in two or three days make a start for Columbus, Georgia with a hope traveling may improve my health. I will render my accounts so soon as I arrive at Columbus.
With Respect
I have the honour to be you obt. servt
John Page, Capt., Supt. Creeks
***************

To: T. Hartley Crawford
Comr. Ind. Affairs
Washington City.
New Orleans, Lou.
5th Feby. 1839
Sir,
     I have the honor, to enclose herewith a communication respecting the straggling Creek Indians left at Pass Christian on the removal of the main body of Indians in October 1837.  All doubtless can be collected without much difficulty with the exception of the one mentioned as having left for Alabama.  The writer of the herewith report is a person on whom reliance can be placed being also well acquainted with Pass Christian and environs.
I am Sir
Very respectfully
your obt. servant
Jno. G. Reynolds
1st Lieut. U. S. M. C.
Disbg. Agt. Ind. Dept.


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