Amanuensis: A person employed to write what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another.
Apple has been transcribing a huge collection of letters for over six months, and her efforts are inspirational. Though not nearly as large a collection as hers, I have many letters and other documents I've scanned in that I wish to transcribe, as well as a handful of audiotapes, and I thought setting up a day of the week where I would post transcriptions might encourage me to do so.
Popular weekly blog memes include Wordless Wednesday, Tombstone Tuesday, and Friday Five. Alliteration seems to be a necessity, and as a poetry aficionado, it appeals to me as well. So, searching for an appropriate alliterative title, I decided to go with "Amanuensis Monday." It's a fairly obscure word, but fits my purpose. It also provides me with the weekend to prepare the posts.
Here's my first entry.
I am going to attempt to do this weekly, and others are welcome to participate. Feel free to leave a link to your transcription in the comments.
Testimony delivered by Samuel T. Hartley in front of The Dawes Commission, 1900
Department of the Interior
Commission to the Five Civilized Tribes,
Muskogee, I.T. Nov. 21, 1900.
In the matter of the application for identification as Mississippi Choctaws of Samuel T. Hartley and his three minor children. Samuel T. Hartley being duly sworn by Acting Chairman Bixby, testified as follows:
Examination by the Commission.
Q. What is your name? A. Samuel T. Hartley.
Q. What is your age? A. I am 70.
Q. What is your post-office address? A. Turnerville, Texas.
Q. Are you a resident of the state of Texas? A. Yes sir.
Q. How long have you resided in Texas? A. I have been in Texas about sixty years I reckon.
Q. Have you maintained a continuous residence in Texas for sixty years? A. Yes sir.
Q. Where did you live prior to that time? A. Mississippi.
Q. What part of Mississippi? A. Choctaw County.
Q. Were your people recognized members of the Choctaw tribe of Indians in Mississippi in 1830? A. My grandmother.
Q. Wasn’t your mother? A. Yes sir, my mother too.
Q. What is your mother’s name? A. Eliza Beasley.
Q. Is she living? A. No sir.
Q. What is your father’s name? A. George W. Hartley.
Q. That is your mother’s maiden name? A. Yes sir.
Q. Is your father living? A. No sir, he’s dead.
Q. Through which one of your parents do you claim your Choctaw blood? A. My father.
Q. How much Choctaw blood do you claim? A. One fourth.
Q. Was your father a recognized member of the Choctaw tribe of Indians in Mississippi in 1830? A. I don’t know, I reckon so.
Q. When did you leave Mississippi? A. I left Mississippi in ’35 I believe.
Q. Did your father come with you? A. Yes sir, come to Little Rock, Arkansas and died.
Q. Your father left Mississippi in 1835 then? A. Yes sir.
Q. Where did he start for? A. He started for Texas.
Q. Do you know anything about his possession in the state of Mississippi? A. No, I do not.
Q. Do you know whether he ever received any land in Mississippi as a beneficiary under the provisions of the 14th article of the treaty of 1830? A. I do not.
Q. That is the article of the treaty under which you are making your claim is it not? A. Yes sir.
Q. Did any of your ancestors ever comply with the provisions of that article of that treaty? A. Not as I know of anything about it.
Q. Why did your father leave Mississippi? A. Because he wanted to come to Texas.
Q. What did he want to come to Texas for? A. I do not know.
Q. Did he signify to the United States Indian Agent for the Choctaw Indians in Mississippi that the wanted to stay there and become a citizen of the states? A. I don’t know that.
Q. Did he remain there the five years as required by the provisions of that article of the treaty? A. I don’t know that.
Q. Did any of your ancestors ever receive or claim any land in Mississippi as beneficiaries under the provisions of the 14th article of the treaty of 1830? A. No sir, I don’t think they did.
Q. If your father was a recognized member of the Choctaw tribe of Indians in Mississippi in 1830 why did he not remove to the Indian territory with the other members of the tribe? A. I don’t know.
Q. What do you know about your father’s Choctaw Indian citizenship in Mississippi? A. I know my father was a one fourth Choctaw.
Q. Was any provisions ever made that you should receive any land in Mississippi under the provisions of the 14th article of the treaty of 1830? A. Not as I know of.
Q. When were you born? A. In 1830.
Q. What month? A. In March, the fourteenth.
Q. You were living on the 27th of September, 1830 were you not? A. I guess I was.
Q. You are aware of the fact that under the provisions of the 14th article of the Treaty of 1830 that you were entitled to certain considerations thereunder as a child? A. Yes sir.
Q. Did you ever receive any benefits under that article of that treaty? A. Never did.
Q. Are you making this claim under any other provisions of any other treaty between the United States and the Choctaw Indians? A. No sir.
Q. Are you married? A. Yes sir.
Q. What is your wife’s name? A. Nannie V. Hartley.
Q. Is she a white woman? A. Yes sir.
Q. Never made any claim to Indian citizenship by blood? A. No sir.
Q. Are you making any claim for her now? A. No sir.
Q. When did you marry her? A. In ’90.
Q. Where were you married to her? A. In Texas.
Q. Married in accordance with the laws of the state of Texas? A. Yes sir.
Q. Have you your marriage license and certificate? A. Yes sir.
Q. Have you them with you? A. No sir.
Q. It will be necessary for the Commission to be supplied with evidence of your marriage to your wife in the matter of the identification of your children. Have you any children under 21 years of age and unmarried for whom you desire to make application? A. Three.
Q. What are their names and ages? A. Ammie Hartley.
Q. How old is she? A. Nineteen.
Q. Who is the mother of Ammie Hartley? A. My first wife.
Q. What was her name? A. Margaret Hartley.
Q. Is she dead? A. Yes sir.
Q. Have you your marriage license and certificate to Margaret Hartley? A. Yes sir.
Q. It will be necessary for the Commission to be supplied with evidence of your marriage to your first wife in the matter of the application for the identification of this child. What are the names and ages of your other two children? A. Samuel H. Hartley. Sixteen.
Q. This same mother? A. Yes sir.
Q. The next one? A. By my second wife, Eddie R.
Q. How old is he? A. Ten years old.
Q. This child is by your second wife? A. Yes sir.
Q. These children all live with you at your home? A. Yes sir.
Q. You and your wife living together? A. Yes sir.
Q. Any additional statement you desire to make in support of this application? A. No sir.
Q. Is there any written evidence that you desire to offer the commission for consideration in support of this application?
Here attorney for applicant asks leave to file written evidence in support of this claim in 15 days from this date.
Permission is granted the attorney for the applicant to file written evidence in support of this application provided the same is offered for filing with this Commission within fifteen days from the date thereof.
By L.P. Hudson, attorney for the applicant.
Q. Mr. Hartley is it your intention to remove to the Indian Territory for the purpose of making a home here? A. Yes sir.
Q. And to do that in the near future? A. Yes sir.
By the Commission.
The decision of the Commission as to your application and the application you make on behalf of your three minor children for identification as Mississippi Choctaws will be mailed to you in writing sometime in the near future to your present post-office address.
Myra Young, having been first duly sworn upon her oath states that as stenographer to the Commission to the Five Civilized tribes she reported in full all the proceedings had in the above entitled cause on the 21st day of November, 1900, and that the above and foregoing is a full, true and correct transcript of her stenographic notes of said proceedings on said date.
(signature of Myra Young)
Subscribed and sworn to before me this 22nd day of November, 1900.
(signature of Guy L Emerson, Notary Public)
Questions emphasized above to improve readability.
Samuel Tillman Hartley (burial info) was the brother of my second great grandmother, Sarah Ann (Hartley) Denyer. His first wife was Margaret Rawls, and his second wife was Nannie Virginia Rock (burial info).
I first blogged about discovering these records on Footnote back in September. As you can see, while there wasn't enough evidence for the Commission to recognize the family as Choctaws, there was still a lot of good genealogical information to be discovered within the testimony.
I am going to limit myself to items that are either public record, like the above, or were written by relatives who have been deceased at least fifty years. (Unless I receive permission otherwise from the author, if still alive, or their children.) In a post last September, Geneablogie explained the current death+70 restriction on unpublished works doesn't usually apply to pre-1976 works, though with works by family members I am going to proceed with caution.