Cyrus Harris

The Enduring Spirit of the Chickasaw People

Despite his lack of formal schooling, Cyrus Harris became a widely respected interpreter who emerged as a leader among the Chickasaws amidst the move to Indian Territory. After the Chickasaw Nation demanded to be recognized as an independent sovereign nation, he was elected its first governor and went on to serve five terms in office. Join host Lisa Billy as she introduces the life of a pivotal Chickasaw leader, including accounts from historians and descendants of Harris. This episode takes Harris through the preparations for removal, the establishment of the Chickasaw Nation as a governmental entity and its course during and after the Civil War. To this day he is remembered by his people as a selfless leader and an honorable man who strove to support education and stability for the Chickasaw Nation.