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DAWES Enrollment Info - 5 Civilized Tribes

This information was posted on Rootsweb Digest V99 #570, X-Message: #11

Date: Thu, 12 Aug 1999 16:14:29 EDT


Subject: DAWES Enrollment Info - 5 Civilized Tribes

~ The Dawes Roll includes enrollment records for the 5 Civilized Tribes; Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek and Seminole.

~ This roll is the one you must prove a direct ancestor on to even consider enrollment into the Cherokee Nation in Oklahoma today. Both accepted and rejected families are listed. Even if your ancestor was not accepted, their enrollment package may still provide a wealth of information as an application was completed with family history.....

~ This enrollment is searchable online at:

~ If you find your ancestors name you can request copies of a Dawes case file, indicate that the case is a Dawes Enrollment Jacket. You must also provide the name of the enrollee, the tribe, the category, enrollment number (if applicable), and census card number. Requests without this information can not be processed.

~~ Please make your requests in writing to NARA's Southwest Region (Fort Worth, TX). Requests are accepted via fax, e-mail, or regular mail.

~~ Copies cost $10 per census card number up to 20 pages and $0.50 per page thereafter. Payment can be made by check, money order, or credit card. Do not send cash. Payment must be exact, so credit card payments generally are the most convenient.

~ Within the United States, overnight delivery is available for an extra $4.00.

~ Please state in your request that you would like this feature and provide your street address and phone number. Please NOTE: No P.O. Box numbers are accepted.

~ The Dawes Enrollment by Bob Blankenship is available at many local libraries, but gives only limited information from the original enrollment package.

~ Citizens of the Tribes were enrolled under the following categories:

~ Some of the requirements for final enrollment were:

  1. The establishment of legal residence in the Nations of Oklahoma during the enrollment period of 1899-1906.
  2. Applicants for final enrollment could not have died prior to 1 Sept.1902; or, in the case of minor children, could not have been born after 4 March 1906, and could not have died prior to that date.
  3. The Rolls of Freedmen (former slaves owned by the Nations prior to the Civil War) were limited to those persons and their descendants who were actual residents of one of the Nations on 11 August 1866, or whoreturned and established such residence on or before 11 Feb 1867.

~ By the final enrollment day 4 March 1907, 101,211 individuals were certified to share in the properties of the Five Civilized Tribes.

~ The final number of individuals certified as Cherokee citizens were:

~ To begin your research:

  1. You need to know in which Nation your ancestor lived. If they were of mixed blood, for example, such as Choctaw/Cherokee, they may have been living in the Choctaw Nation. You would look under the Choctaw section of the Dawes Roll.
  2. If you are looking for a female ancestor and are not certain about a marriage date, be sure to check under the maiden name and the married name.
  3. Remember:
    • The federal government relied on earlier rolls to determine eligibility
    • Not all American Indians wanted to be registered. There may be a discrepancy regarding your ancestor's quantum blood as listed on the Dawes Roll. Minor children and restricted Indians (those of more than one-half degree quantum blood) had their personal and financial affairs controlled by the government agents. In order to avoid these controls, many Indians reported their quantum blood to be less than it was.
    • Not all Cherokees were in the right time or place to be included in earlier rolls.

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