Finding Aid: John Ross Papers

Institution: Thomas Gilcrease Library and Archive
Language of Material: English
Description: 11 feet  
Period covered: 1797 - 1897 
Subject matter: John Ross (1790-1866) chief of the First Indian Republic, was principal chief of the Cherokees during the time of the Removal, establishment of the Cherokee Nation, and until his death. During the Civil War he split with the Cherokees who favored the Southern cause and ruled in exile after 1863 from Philadelphia.
The collection contains correspondence, proclamation as chief of the Cherokee Tribe, legal papers, records, accounts, lists of names, and rations allocated  during removal from Tennessee to Indian Territory, official and other papers of the Cherokee Council, petitions and protests to Congress, and  papers relating to the East and West Cherokee controversy and the Civil War.
Interesting items: A number of papers relate to the various detachments, or groups, of Cherokees being removed from their homes in the East. One such paper is the Muster Roll of Captain John Benge's Detachment of Emigrating Cherokees. Another document records expenditures of one detachment,  the costs for which the U.S.  Government  promised  reimbursement.

Background: Staff, interns, and volunteers of the Thomas Gilcrease Library and Archive have contributed to the organization and maintenance of the files since the collection passed to the City of Tulsa in the 1950s. The Gilcrease Foundation acquired these materials before 1964 and is housed in the Helmerich Center for American Research (HCAR). The library currently receives most materials through community donation, board members, artists and the acquisition of manuscript collections.

Extent: 11 feet

Restrictions: Please, contact the Rights and Reproduction Department for information on publishing or reproducing materials included in these records. Permission will be granted by the Gilcrease Museum as the owner of the physical materials, and does not imply permission from the copyright holder. It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain all necessary permissions from the copyright holder.
http://gilcrease.utulsa.edu/Visit/During-Your-Visit/Policies/Reproduction-Policy

Availability: This collection is open for use by appointment only at the Helmerich Center for American Research (HCAR). Contact the Library at 918-631-6441 or renee-harvey@utulsa.edu in advance to inquire if materials exist pertaining to your research interests.

Arrangement Title Description Date
John Ross, Folder 269 Two Unsigned Drafts of Parts of Letter from Chief John Ross to Secretary of War Joel R. Poinsett

Two unsigned drafts of part of letter from Chief John Ross to Secretary of War Joel R. Poinsett enclosing copy of 'Talk' and his instructions to delegation to Seminoles. (Moulton). One sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on recto. Folder 269

November 28, 1837
John Ross, Folder 270 Letter from William Potter Ross to Chief John Ross

Letter from William Potter Ross (nephew) in Lawrenceville to Chief John Ross concerning school, also reporting departure of Uncle Mulky, Ridge, Boudinot, and others for Arkansas. (Moulton). Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on four pages.
Folder 270

November 28, 1837
John Ross, Folder 271 Letter from Richard Fields to Chief John Ross

Letter from Richard Fields at Fort Mellon in East Florida to Chief John Ross referring to meeting with Seminole Chiefs in which Chief John Ross' 'Talk' was read. (Moulton). Sheets of paper with handwritten text in ink.
Folder 271

December 6, 1837
John Ross, Folder 271A Photostat of letter

Photostat of letter (REG. NO. 4026.500).
Folder 271A

December 6, 1837
John Ross, Folder 272 Letter from Chief John Ross and Edward Gunter to Colonel John Mason, Jr.

Letter from Chief John Ross and Edward Gunter in Washington City to Colonel John Mason, Jr. regretting termination of negotiations and acceptance of Senate ratification without assent of Cherokees to the Treaty. Three sheets of paper with handwritten text in ink on all rectos and versos.
Folder 272

December 6, 1837
John Ross, Folder 273 Memorandum of Lieutenant B. Poole on meeting of Major General Thomas Jessup with Seminole Chiefs

Memorandum of Lieutenant B. Poole on meeting of General Thomas Jesup with Seminole Chiefs in which Micanopy attributed unity to mediation of Cherokee Delegation. One sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on recto.
Folder 273

December 7, 1837
John Ross, Folder 274 Memorandum of Lieutenant Colonel William Gates on meeting of Major General Thomas Jessup and Seminole Chiefs and Warriors

Memorandum of Lieutenant Colonel William Gates on meeting of General Thomas Jesup and Seminole Chiefs and Warriors. One sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on recto.
Folder 274

December 5, 1837
John Ross, Folder 275 Letter from Job R. Tyson to Chief John Ross

Letter from J. R. Tyson to Ross. Regarding publication of former's letter. Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on three pages.
Folder 275

December 12, 1837
John Ross, Folder 277 Letter from Major General Jessup to Richard Fields, Hair Conrad, Thomas Woodward, and Jesse Bushyhead

Letter from Major General Jesup to Richard Fields, Hair Conrad, Thomas Woodward, and Jesse Bushyhead, Cherokee Delegation in Washington City expressing appreciation for their efforts which failed, and reporting that Micconopa and Cloud have come in. Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on two pages.
Folder 277

December 15, 1837
John Ross, Folder 278 Copy of Letter from Chief John Ross to Job R. Tyson

Copy of letter from Chief John Ross in Washington City to Job R. Tyson suggesting that 'A publication of late events at this time would be deemed disrespectful toward the Government.' (Moulton). Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on three pages.
Folder 278

December 17, 1837
John Ross, Folder 279 Copy of Letter from Chief John Ross Delegation to Joel R. Poinsett

Copy of letter from the Chief john Ross Delegation to Secretary of War Job R. Poinsett reporting termination of negotiations with Colonel john Mason, Jr. and indicating willingness to enter any negotiations in which Treaty of 1835 is not binding on either party. (Moulton). Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on three pages.
Folder 279

December 27, 1837
John Ross, Folder 280 Letter from Secretary of War Joel R. Poinsett to the Chief John Ross Delegation

Letter from Secretary of War Joel R. Poinsett to the Chief John Ross Delegation acknowledging the about letter, and stating that no negotiation can be entertained, and chiding delegates for raising false hopes among Cherokee. Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on two pages.
Folder 280

December 27, 1837
John Ross, Folder 281 Letter from Evan Jones to Chief John Ross

Letter from Evan Jones in Columbus, Tennessee to Chief John Ross regarding conditions in Cherokee Nation. (Moulton). Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on three pages.
Folder 281

December 29, 1837
John Ross, Folder 282 Unsigned Letter from Chief John Ross to William Shorey Coodey

Unsigned letter from Chief John Ross to William Shorey Coodey regarding Treaty position of United States, failure of Western Cherokee to name delegation, and failure of Seminole negotiations. (Moulton). Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on four pages.
Folder 282

December 1837
John Ross, Folder 283 Copy of Letter from the President of National Council John Smith to Mr. Wooster (Worcester)

Copy of letter from the President of National Council to Mr. Wooster (Worcester) requesting that he not use name or services of Mr. Boudinot in his printing. (OS). One sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on recto and verso.
Folder 283

January 11, 1838
John Ross, Folder 284 Dimensions of National Council House by William Thornton

Dimensions of National Council House by William Thornton, Clerk of National Council. (OS). One sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on recto and verso. Folder 284

January 12, 1838
John Ross, Folder 285 Appointment of and Instructions to Delegates from Western Cherokee Sent to Washington City

Appointment of and instructions to Delegates Major A. Price, Jas. Car, and William Thornton from the Western Cherokee sent to Washington City. (OS). Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on four pages.
Folder 285

January 11, 1838
John Ross, Folder 286 Draft Copies of Letter from Chief John Ross to Lewis Ross

Draft copies of letter from Chief John Ross in Washington City to Brother Lewis Ross as to the Billingsgate Epistle and Seminole Deputation. (Moulton). Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on four pages.
Folder 286

January 13, 1838
John Ross, Folder 287 Letter from Chief John Ross to Secretary of War Joel R. Poinsett

Letter from Chief John Ross to Secretary of War Joel R. Poinsett asking him to authenticate copy of letter from War Department to General N. Smith, Calhoun Tennessee. (Possibly a draft of a letter). One sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on recto.
Folder 287

January 16, 1838
John Ross, Folder 288 Letter from Lewis Ross to Chief John Ross

Letter from Lewis Ross to Chief John Ross regarding 'Anxiety of mind' in Cherokee Nation and Seminole Deputation. (Moulton). Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on three pages.
Folder 288

January 17 & 18, 1838
John Ross, Folder 289 Letter of Authentication from C. A. Harris, War Department, to Chief John Ross

Letter of Authentication from C. A. Harris, War Department, to Chief John Ross. (See January 16, 1838 letter). One sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on recto.
Folder 289

January 18, 1838
John Ross, Folder 290 Letter from Araminta Ann Ross to Chief John Ross

Letter from Araminta Ann Ross at the Lawrenceville Female Seminary to her uncle Chief John Ross. Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on two pages.
Folder 290

January 19, 1838
John Ross, Folder 291 Copy of Letter from Chief John Ross to J. R. Tyson

Copy of a letter from Chief John Ross to J. R. Tyson concerning printing bill and support for Cherokees in Public Prints of his city. (Moulton) Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on three pages.
Folder 291

January 19, 1838
John Ross, Folder 292 Letter from William Potter Ross to Chief John Ross

Letter from William Potter Ross in Lawrenceville to his uncle Chief John Ross. Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on four pages.
Folder 292

January 20, 1838
John Ross, Folder 293 Draft copy of letter from Chief John Ross to George Lowrey

Draft copy of letter from Chief John Ross to George Lowrey regarding status of memorial in Congress and Seminole Delegation. (Moulton). Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on four pages.
Folder 293

January 27, 1838
John Ross, Folder 294 Draft Copy of Letter from Chief John Ross to John Howard Payne

Draft copy of letter from Chief John Ross to John Howard Payne regarding arrest experience, the Memorial, a pamphlet 'To a Gentleman of Philadelphia', the Seminole Delegation, and the Billingsgate Pamphlet of Elias Boudinot. (Moulton) Sheets of paper with handwritten text in ink.
Folder 294

January 27, 1838
John Ross, Folder 295 Two Draft Copies of a Letter from Chief John Ross to John Howard Payne

Two draft copies of a letter from Chief John Ross to John Howard Payne. (See January 27, 1838) One sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on recto and verso.
Folder 295

January 27, 1838
Two Draft Copies of a Letter from Chief John Ross to John Howard Payne

Two draft copies of a letter from Chief John Ross to John Howard Payne. (See January 27, 1838). One sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on recto and handwritten in pencil on verso.
Folder 295

January 27, 1838
John Ross, Folder 296 Fragment of Document Relating to Billingsgate Pamphlet

Fragment of document relating to the Billingsgate Pamphlet. [See Moulton Vol. I-588] One sheet handwritten text in ink on one side. One sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on recto.
Folder 296

January 27, 1838
John Ross, Folder 297 Draft Copy of Letter from Chief John Ross to 'Sir' (John H. Sherburne, Special Agent)

Draft copy of letter from Chief John Ross (January 1838?) to 'Sir' (John H. Sherburne, Special Agent) concerning rumor circulating about Seminole Deputation. (Moulton) One sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on recto and verso.
Folder 297

1797 - 1897
John Ross, Folder 298 Letter from John M. Ross to Chief John Ross

Letter from John M. Ross in Lawrenceville to his uncle Chief John Ross. Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on four pages.
Folder 298

February 2, 1838
John Ross, Folder 299 Letter from William Potter to Cherokee Delegation

Letter from William Potter in Hudson, Ohio to Cherokee Delegation seeking advice on 'going to Arkansas' with the Cherokee. Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on two pages. Folder 299

February 3, 1838
John Ross, Folder 300 Letter from Araminta Ann Ross to Chief John Ross

Letter from Araminta Ann Ross at the Lawrenceville Female Seminary to her uncle Chief John Ross. Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on three pages.
Folder 300

February 8, 1838
John Ross, Folder 301 Letter from Lewis Ross to Chief John Ross

Letter from Lewis Ross to Chief John Ross referring to caucus which is collecting signatures to be sent to Washington City. (Moulton). Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on three pages.
Folder 301

February 5, 1838
John Ross, Folder 303 Report by the Seminole Deputation to Chief John Ross

Report by the Seminole Deputation (Richard Fields, Hair Conrad, Jesse Bushyhead, and Thomas Woodward) in Washington City to Chief John Ross. Folded sheets of paper with handwritten text in ink on twenty three pages.
Folder 303

February 17, 1838
John Ross, Folder 304 Unsigned Letter from Chief John Ross to Reverend W. Potter

Unsigned letter from Chief John Ross to Reverend W. Potter regarding the opinion of the former missionary as to the preference of boarding schools. (Moulton) Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on four pages. Folder 304

February 22, 1838
John Ross, Folder 305 Draft Copy of Letter from Chief John Ross to Lewis Ross

Draft copy of letter from Chief John Ross to Lewis Ross reporting on uproar in House over representative killed in duel, status of memorial to Senate, and $2,000 paid to Mr. Tilston of New York. (Moulton) Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on three pages.
Folder 305

February 26, 1838
John Ross, Folder 306 Letter from Evan Jones to Chief John Ross

Letter from Evan Jones to Chief John Ross regarding pamphlet to be prepared to refute Boudinot's pamphlet. Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on four pages.
Folder 306

February 26, 1838
John Ross, Folder 307 Draft Copy of Letter from Chief John Ross to Secretary of War Joel R. Poinsett

Draft copy of letter from Chief John Ross in Washington City to Secretary of War Joel r. Poinsett requesting permission to submit for reimbursement for the expenses of the Seminole Deputation. (Moulton). Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on three pages.
Folder 307

February 28, 1838
John Ross, Folder 308 Incomplete and Unsigned Draft of Letter from Chief John Ross to Secretary of War Joel R. Poinsett

Incomplete and unsigned draft of letter from Chief John Ross (?) to Secretary of War Joel R. Poinsett seeking indemnification for debt of William Doherty of which writer (see folder 309) was deprived by interference of Ben F. Curry, Cherokee Agent for emigration. Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on three pages.
Folder 308

February 1838
John Ross, Folder 309 Copy of Letter from Commissioner of Indian Affairs C. A. Harris to Secretary of War Joel R. Poinsett

Copy of letter from Commissioner of Indian Affairs C. A. Harris to Secretary of War Joel R. Poinsett denying James Brown's claim (See Feb 1838). Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on three pages.
Folder 309

March 2, 1838
John Ross, Folder 310 Letter from William Potter Ross to Chief John Ross

Letter from William Potter Ross in Lawrenceville to his uncle Chief John Ross about the problem in getting settlement of the Cherokee affairs. Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on four pages.
Folder 310

March 2, 1838
John Ross, Folder 311 Unsigned Draft Copy of Letter from Chief John Ross to Secretary of War Joel R. Poinsett

Unsigned draft copy of letter from Chief John Ross in Washington City to Secretary of War Joel R. Poinsett concerning denial of compensation to Seminole Deputation. (Moulton) One sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on recto and verso.
Folder 311

March 5, 1838
John Ross, Folder 312 Letter from Lewis Ross to Chief John Ross

Letter from Lewis Ross to Chief John Ross concerning the conditions in the Nation. (Moulton). Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on three pages.
Folder 312

March 5, 1838
John Ross, Folder 313 Letter from Pumpkinvine to Situagi Sittewakee

Letter from Pumpkinvine in Huntington Main County, North Carolina to Sittuagua Situwakee in Washington City seeking letter from Delegation and describing conditions in Nation. Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on three pages.
Folder 313

March 7, 1838
John Ross, Folder 314 Letter from Secretary of War Joel R. Poinsett to Chief John Ross

Letter from Secretary of War Joel R. Poinsett to Chief John Ross in Washington City allowing for $5.00 per day to Seminole Deputation, excluding time spent in Washington. Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on recto and handwritten text in pencil on 4026.538.1 verso.
Folder 314

March 7, 1838
John Ross, Folder 315 Copy of Declaration of John Watts with Respect to an Island in Tennessee River Held Jointly with Chief John Ross

Copy of Declaration of John Watts with respect to an island in the Tennessee River held jointly with Chief John Ross before his removal west under the Treaty of 1817. One sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on recto and verso. Folder 315

March 9, 1838
John Ross, Folder 316 Letter from Lewis W. Hildebrand to Chief John Ross

Letter from Lewis W. Hildebrand to Chief John Ross, reporting arrival in Washington with petition bearing 15,665 signatures. Single folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on two pages.
Folder 316

March 10, 1838
John Ross, Folder 316A Draft of March 10, 1838 letter

Draft of March 10, 1838 letter. One sheet with handwritten text in ink on the recto.
Folder 316A

March 10, 1838
John Ross, Folder 317 Unidentified text to be read by White Path

Unidentified text to be read by White Path (Cherokee Delegate). One folded sheet of paper with handwritten text in ink on two pages.
Folder 317

March 11, 1838