Home of the Plainsmen -1830 to 1885-

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 Post subject: CHISHOLM, JESSE (ca. 1805-1868)
PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2012 11:58 am 
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Of Scottish and Cherokee descent, plainsman Jesse Chisholm is best remembered today by the Chisholm Trail, the famous route of cattle drives across Indian Territory (present Oklahoma) from Texas to Kansas. He was, however, far more historically significant as a frontier trader who first worked among the Plains Indians and served as a mediator in their dealings with the Cherokee Nation, the Republic of Texas, and the United States.

Chisholm first emerged into historical notice as a member of a gold-searching party that explored up the Arkansas River to the site of present Wichita, Kansas, in 1826. Four years later he helped blaze a trail from Fort Gibson to Fort Towson, and in 1834 he was a member of the Dodge-Leavenworth Expedition, which made the first official contact with the Comanche, Kiowa, and Wichita near the Wichita Mountains in southwestern Oklahoma.

In 1836 Chisholm married fifteen-year-old Eliza Edwards, daughter of Creek trader James Edwards, who operated a trading post situated on the right bank of the Little River about three miles above its confluence with the North Canadian River. From there, Chisholm made trading ventures onto the prairie, becoming close friends with tribe leaders. Eventually, he moved west along the Canadian River and established a trading post near present Asher and later at Council Grove along the North Canadian River near present western Oklahoma City.

During the 1840s Chisholm assisted the Republic of Texas and the United States in bringing American Indian leaders to treaty councils in which he served as an intermediary and interpreter. Following the 1846 Treaty of Comanche Peak, Chisholm accompanied an Indian delegation to Washington, D.C., where he interpreted for Pres. James K. Polk. During the Civil War Chisholm established a ranch near present Wichita, Kansas. Following the war he was again instrumental in bringing Indian leaders to treaty councils in Kansas. He died on March 4, 1868, while trading with Americans Indians on Salt Creek. His grave is located northeast of Geary, Oklahoma.

 Post subject: Re: CHISHOLM, JESSE (ca. 1805-1868)
PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2014 1:56 pm 

Joined: Mon Dec 23, 2013 9:03 pm
Posts: 13
James Edwards married a Creek woman from the tribal town of Tulsa and they had two daughters- Elizabeth (Eliza) and Lucinda. Edwards' Post was the last stop to get supplies for folks headed to places like Santa Fe and Sutter's Mill. The California Trail went right through to the post and branched off- the northern route continued through Seminole country and the southern route through Chickasaw country- both meeting up at a narrow ford of the South Canadian River in western I.T. Edwards had a huge place and employed both Creeks (his wife's people) and Seminoles to work his garden and livestock. We (Seminoles) have been cattlemen and horsemen since the mid-1700s while still in Florida. The post was also a clearing house for captives brought in by Chisholm, who bought or traded for them from the Comanche or Mexicans. These young children were then taken 150 miles east to Ft. Gibson, where a lot of families would go in search of their missing children. Some of the Mexicans and blacks who didn't have any family left, were adopted by Jesse and his wife, Eliza (Edwards' oldest daughter) and became members of the Creek Nation. Jesse and Eliza and had a few boys, but she died several years later while he went to Comanche Peak with a few of us. He married another Creek woman, last name McQueen, then moved further out west on the South Canadian river and established a trading post there and continued to trade with the Kiowa, Comanche, Delaware and others.

I live 6 miles west of where Edwards' Post used to be. Its a straight shot down the dirt road that runs on the north side of it. For the past several years, I've been doing research and fieldwork on the post, along with Ft. Holmes (across the river from the post) and the Seminole and Creek settlements nearby that date from 1834. Lots of history here in I.T., but most folks around here just think its all Civil War.


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