TAGS   |   Territorial Era


25 Events

Settling Down

A separation from the Choctaw Nation and a new era of self-governance
In 1855 the Chickasaw signed a treaty of separation from the Choctaws and regained their independence and rights to self-government.

Edmund Pickens Selected As Chief

One of his numerous leadership positions in service of the Chickasaw people
Edmund Pickens was selected as the first chief of the Chickasaw District of the Choctaw Nation in 1841.

Education and Commerce

The founding of the first Chickasaw holissaapisa, or schools
Once settled, the Chickasaws recognized the importance of developing their own commerce and educational systems.

Curtis Act Passes

The incorporated Atoka Agreement authorized the federal government to allot Chickasaw lands
Despite opposition from the Chickasaws, Congress incorporated the Atoka Agreement into the Curtis Act, which passed on June 28, 1898.

Committee of Vigilance

Established to manage the Chickasaws' external affairs separately from the Choctaw Nation
After living with the Choctaws for more than a decade, the Chickasaws were ready to terminate their compact.

Fort Washita

Built in 1842 as a treaty obligation for relocated Chickasaw and Choctaw people
Fort Washita was established in 1842 under Colonel Zachary Taylor as the southwestern-most military post of the United States.

Robert M. Harris Elected As Governor

Served as the 21st governor of the Chickasaw Nation
Robert M. Harris became governor of the Chickasaw Nation in 1896. He served as governor from 1896-1898.

Winchester Colbert Elected As Governor

Served as the second governor of the Chickasaw Nation
Winchester Colbert was elected as governor of the Chickasaw Nation in 1858. He served as governor from 1858-1860, 1862-1864, and 1864-1866.

Land Run and Its Effects

Marked an increase in non-Indian settlement and led to statehood for Oklahoma
On April 22, 1889, thousands of non-Indians left the town of Purcell and rushed to claim their 160-acre tracts in the "unassigned lands" to the north.


A dark and painful time in American and Chickasaw history
The first group of Chickasaws removed from the Homeland gathered at Sealy's District in Memphis, Tennessee, on July 4, 1837.

Benjamin Overton Elected As Governor

Known for his no-nonsense attitude and advocacy for the improvement of Chickasaw education
Benjamin Overton became governor of the Chickasaw Nation in 1874. He served as governor from 1874-1876, 1876-1878, 1880-1882, and 1882-1884.

Palmer S. Mosely Elected As Governor

Served as the 20th and the 23rd Governor of the Chickasaw Nation
Palmer S. Mosely was elected as governor of the Chickasaw Nation in 1894. He served as governor from 1894-1896 and 1902-1904.

Coming of the Railroads

Although the railway facilitated trade, it also brought non-Indians onto tribal lands
Railroads opened the nation to expanded trade. The Chickasaw had grown cotton since the early 1800s. Cotton processing became a major industry again.

Civil War and More Broken Promises

A tumultuous time for the United States and the Chickasaw Nation
The Civil War came. At first, the Chickasaw didn't know which side to choose or if they should remain neutral.

The Tragedy of Broken Trust

Promises were broken and generations of Chickasaws are affected
"The Tragedy of Broken Trust" recounts a side of American history that isn't taught in schools.

Treaty of 1866

The aftermath of the American Civil War
At the end of the Civil War, the five southeastern tribes and others faced reparations for opposing the North. All were summoned to Washington.

William Byrd Elected As Governor

Conscientious and resilient in his push for independent status for the Native Americans
William Byrd became governor of the Chickasaw Nation in 1888. He served as governor from 1888-1890 and 1890-1892.

Fort Arbuckle

Built to protect the Chickasaw people from attack by the Plains Indians
Fort Arbuckle was built in 1851, northwest of Fort Washita. Plains Indians continued to be a threat to the Chickasaws and Choctaws.

Douglas H. Johnston Elected As Governor

The first governor of the Chickasaw people to be appointed by the president of the United States
Douglas H. Johnston became governor of the Chickasaw Nation in 1898. He served as governor from 1898-1900, 1900-1902, 1904-1906, and 1906-1939.

William Guy Elected As Governor

Opposed discriminating policies affecting tribal members regarding quantity of Indian blood
William Guy became governor of the Chickasaw Nation in 1886. He served as governor from 1886-1888.