the old guard who had carried the burden of the Indian missionary work so many years began to lay down their arms.
The names which had emerged as foremost in assisting the Choctaws and developing them into Christians were: Kingsbury, Copeland, Byington, and Stark.
The Choctaw Nation had been influenced by Congregationalists, Methodists, Presbyterians and other denominational groups and all had strived toward one goal – the birth of a Nation in Oklahoma Territory.
These servants of God had not only brought Christianity to the people, but they had encouraged education and formed many schools for the training of Indian youth.
Morrison The large portion of the territory of our Southern States from Florida to the Mississippi River was once occupied by the Muskogean family of Indian whose leading tribes were the Creek, Seminoles, Choctaws and Chickasaws.
The Choctaws and Chickasaws, with language and customs very much alike, occupied the major part of what is now Western Alabama, all of Mississippi and Louisiana, and Western Tennessee.
There was a tradition among these tribes that in the earliest times they lived far to the west of the Great River, and were ruled over by two brothers, Chatah and Chicksah.
Being oppressed by enemies, they decided to seek a new home, and not knowing in which direction to turn, they erected a tall pole in their camp one evening and prayed to the Great Spirit that he would, during the night, incline the pole the way that they should go.
At last they came to the banks of the Great River, which they named Misha Sapokini, meaning “very old” or “beyond age.
Finally, at the banks of the Yazoo, the pole remained erect, and in commemoration of the great event, they here erected an earthen mound forty feet high, covering several acres of ground.
” This became a sort of shrine for the Indians and the name was afterwards carried over to Oklahoma and applied to the first capitol of the Choctaws in their final home.
After prayer, it was found the next day that the pole pointed towards the north, so Chicksah and his followers went to what is now the northern part of Mississippi and Western Tennessee, leaving the remainder of the people with Chatah in the south country.
De Soto felt the prowess of the Choctaws at Old Mobile, and later the Chickasaws administered crushing defeats upon the French, as they attempted to press to the north.
The Che friendly to the French, and many of the latter intermarried with these Indians, so that today some of the most notable Ches are evidently of French origin.
These Indians, always possessing some of the rudiments of civilization, welcomed the friendly advances of the English at a later date, were eager for education, and early in the nineteenth century, when the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions sent missionaries to the Cherokees, the Choctaws urged that they, too, should be considered worthy of a similar favor.