Man finds long lost 1828 Cherokee Phoenix
Cherokee Nation citizen Albert Eagle came across an 1828 edition of the Cherokee Phoenix at the home of his grandmother, Dora Adair, in Stilwell, Oklahoma. He last saw the print 40 years ago when he was 13 years old. JAMI MURPHY/CHEROKEE PHOENIX
This early 1900s photo is of Cherokee Nation citizen Albert Eagle’s grandmother Dora Adair, left, and his great-grandmother Linda Sawnie, right. Eagle believes that Sawnie’s mother brought the 1828 Cherokee Phoenix that he recently found to Indian Territory on the Trail of Tears. JAMI MURPHY/CHEROKEE PHOENIX
Cherokee Heritage Center interim Archivist Jerry Thompson, left, prepares an 1828 Cherokee Phoenix newspaper to be scanned at the CHC in Park Hill, Oklahoma. Cherokee Nation citizen Albert Eagle found the issue among other papers at his grandmother’s home in Adair County. JAMI MURPHY/CHEROKEE PHOENIX
PARK HILL, Okla. – Cherokee Nation citizen Albert Eagle, of Stilwell, recently came across a May 14, 1828, Cherokee Phoenix issue. Eagle first saw the newspaper about 40 years ago when his grandmother, Dora Adair, was going through paperwork.
“Yeah, the last time I saw it was when I was about 13 just before going to high school. My grandmother had it laying on the bed and she was looking through other papers so I asked her ‘what is this?’ And she said, ‘it’s just an old paper I’ve been saving for years and years and years,’” Eagle said.
Eagle isn’t positive, but from what he could gather, his great-great-great-grandmother, Susie Livers, and her parents, Chulio Livers and Eliza Jackson, brought the newspaper with them when they were removed to Indian Territory on the Trail of Tears in 1838-39.
He said when he saw it years ago he didn’t think to find out the newspaper’s history, why it was brought or consider how old it was.
“Thirteen years old, you don’t pay attention to things like that you know. So I left it alone and here about two weeks ago (in April) I was cleaning out an old dresser of hers and there was a bag way in the back,” he said.
When Eagle grabbed the bag several documents fell out, as well as the newspaper.
“First thing that popped in my head was that ‘yeah, I remember this,’” he said. “You know when I unfolded it, it tore a little bit so I was trying to be careful with it. What got me the most was the date on it.”
What Eagle said was most interesting about its age was that it predated the Trail of Tears and Civil War.
A big question on Eagle and his family’s minds was why his ancestors thought so much of the newspaper to bring it with them on the trail. The 53-year-old said he didn’t think to ask his grandmother years ago why it was brought to Indian Territory, but he wished he had now that she has passed.
“I kind of wished I did back then though. I would’ve tried to have somebody keep up with it. It’s just something you don’t pay attention to when you’re that age,” he said.
After speaking with Eagle initially, current Cherokee Phoenix staff members looked at photos of the four-page edition and located the name Walter Adair in an announcement as candidate for the Committee for Coosewattee District. The announcement also contained well-known Cherokees John Ridge and Major Ridge, as well as Tesahdaski and James Foster.
Staff members contacted Eagle regarding the Adair name and Eagle said he would check into it. Later, Eagle told staff members that Walter Adair was his great-great-great-great-great-great-great-grandfather and possibly the reason the newspaper was kept all these years.
Although Eagle said he and his family are working out plans for the 187-year-old print, the idea he and his sister, Margaret Wermy, had was to show it off during the Cherokee National Holiday, possibly with the Cherokee Heritage Center.
“It belongs to my sister, too. We’d like to have it taken care of, you know, and put up for display for the holiday. We’d like to share it with other people, the Cherokees,” he said. “My main concern was to share it with everybody.”
CHC interim Archivist Jerry Thompson said he was impressed with the newspaper’s quality. To preserve it, Thompson digitized it for Eagle to keep the original in good condition.
“So for it to be almost 200 years old, it’s in really great condition,” Thompson said. “The document itself is a great record for the time period. From what he had told me and from what we were seeing, he had never seen the inside of the newspaper itself and after digitizing it and him being able to look at the inside of the paper itself, it was pretty revealing. I mean you could see it on his face. And for him to have kept it in his family for this long period of time in the condition that it’s in, that’s really outstanding.”Click here to view
the complete scanned 1828 Cherokee Phoenix.
ᎠᏭᏂᏴᏍᏗ, ᎣᎦᎵᎰᎹ. – ᏣᎳᎩ ᎠᏰᎵ ᎨᎳ Albert Eagle, Stilwell, ᎾᏞᎬ ᎤᎾᏩᏛᎲ ᎠᏂᏍᎬᏘ ᏂᎦᏚᏏᏁ ᏁᎳᏚ ᎢᏍᎪᎯᏧᏈ ᏔᎵᏍᎪ ᏧᏁᎳ ᎤᏕᏘᏴᏌᏗᏒ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅᎢ, ᏣᎳᎩ ᏧᎴᎯᏌᏅᎢ, ᎤᏬᎭᎵ ᎢᎬᏱ ᎤᎪᎲ ᎪᏪᎵ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏅᎩᏍᎪ ᎢᎸᏢ ᎾᏕᏘᏯ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎤᎵᏏ, Dora Adair, ᏓᎪᎵᏱᏍᎬ ᎪᏪᎵ ᏚᎾᎥᎢ.
“ᎥᏍᎩ, ᎣᏂ ᎠᎩᎪᎯ ᏦᎦᏚ ᎠᏎ ᎢᎸᏢ ᏯᏆᏕᏘᏴᏓ ᎨᏎ ᎦᎸᎳᏗ ᏧᎾᏕᎶᏆᏍᏗ ᎾᎥ ᎤᏓᎷᎸ ᏗᏆᏕᎶᏆᏍᏗ. ᎡᎵᏏ ᎤᏢᎥ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎪᏪᎵ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅ ᎦᏂᏟ ᎠᎴ ᏂᏚᏓᎴ ᎪᏪᎵ ᏓᎪᎵᏱᏍᎬᎢ ᏥᏯᏛᏛᏅ ‘ᎦᏙᎤᏍᏗ ᎯᎠ?’ ᎠᎴ ᎯᎠ ᏄᏪᏒ, ᎾᏊᏛ ᎤᏪᏘ ᎪᏪᎵ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅ ᎠᏆᎵᏏᏅᏙ ᎾᏕᏘᏯᏊ ᎾᎩᏃᎢ,” ᎤᏛᏅ Eagle.
Eagle Ꮭ ᏙᎯᏳ ᏳᏅᏔ, ᎢᎦ ᎠᏅᏓᏗᏍᎬ, ᎤᎵᏏ ᏦᎢ ᎢᏳᏩᎪᏗ ᎤᏔᎾ ᎤᎵᏏ, Susie Livers, ᎠᎴᏧᎦᏴᎵᎨ, Chulio Livers ᎠᎴ Eliza Jackson, ᎤᏂᏃᏞ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎪᏪᎵ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅ ᎤᏂᎷᏣ ᏗᎨᏥᏱᎳᏫᏛᎲᎢ ᎾᎿ ᎠᏂᏴᏫᏯ ᎤᏂᎲ ᎦᏙ ᎤᏂᎷᎯᏍᏗᎢ ᏅᏃᎯ ᏚᎾᏠᏱᎸ ᏁᎳᏚ ᎢᏍᎪᎯᏧᏈ ᏦᏍᎪ ᏧᏁᎳ ᎠᎴ ᏦᏍᎪ ᏐᏁᎳ ᎢᎪᎯᏓ.
ᎠᏗᏍᎬ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏧᎪᎮ ᎾᏕᏘᏯ Ꮭ ᏰᎵᏍᎨ ᎤᏩᏛᏗ ᎪᏪᎵ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅ ᎪᏪᎸ ᏂᏧᎵᏍᏔᏅᏍᏔᏅ, ᏄᏰᎸᏛ ᎤᏂᏃᏢ ᎠᎴ ᎢᏴ ᏳᏕᏘᏴᏓ ᎨᏒᎢ.
“ᏦᎦᏚ ᎢᏳᏕᏘᏴᏓ, Ꮭ ᏯᎦᏎᏍᏙ ᏂᎦᎵᏍᏔᏅᏍᎬ ᎣᏂ ᎠᏕᎶᎰᎯᏍᏗ ᎨᏐᎢ. ᎤᏁᎳᎦ ᎨᏒ ᎾᏍᏳ ᎠᎴ ᏃᏊ ᏔᎵᎭ ᎢᏳᎾᏙᏓᏆᏍᏗ ᏥᎨᏒ (ᎧᏬᏂ ᏥᎧᎸ) ᏥᏅᎦᎵᏍᎬ ᎤᏪᏘ ᏗᏎᎯᏍᏗ ᎤᏤᎵ ᎢᏳᎵᏍᏔᏅ ᎾᎿ ᎦᎸ ᏕᎦᎸᏗ ᎭᏫᏂᏴ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬ.
ᎾᏍᎩᏃ Eagle ᏭᎴᏌ ᏕᎦᎶᏗ ᎢᎸᏍᎩ ᏚᏙᏒ ᏗᎪᏪᎳ ᏗᎪᏪᎵ, ᎾᏍᏊ ᎪᏪᎵ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅ.
“ᎢᎬᏱ ᎢᏳᏍᏗ ᎠᏆᏓᏅᏖᎸ ᎾᏍᎩ ‘ᎦᏅᏓᏗᎠ ᎯᎠ,”’ ᎤᏛᏅ. “ᏣᏅᏔᏍ ᏓᎩᏴᏈᏕᏏ, ᎤᏍᏗ ᎤᏲᏨ ᎢᎦ ᎠᏩᎵᏏᏅᏛ. ᎢᏳᏍᏗ ᎠᎩᎪᎲ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎢᏴ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅ ᎨᏒ”
ᎢᏳᏍᏗ ᎠᏗᏍᎬ Eagle ᎤᏍᏆᏂᎪᏗ ᎨᏒ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎢᏴ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅ ᎨᏒ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏗᎨᏥᏱᎳᏫᏛᎲ ᎠᎴ ᎤᏴᏢ ᎠᎴ ᎤᎦᎾᏮ ᏧᎾᏟᎴᎢ.
ᎤᏔᎾ ᎠᏛᏗ ᎨᏒ Eagle ᎠᎴ ᎠᏂᏏᏓᏁᎸ ᏗᎾᏓᏅᏛ ᎦᏙᎲ ᎯᎠ ᎪᎱᏍᏗ ᏧᏅᎾ ᎤᎾᏓᏅᏖᎴ ᏂᏓᏳᏂᎾᏫᏗ ᎯᎠ ᎪᏪᎵ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅ ᎨᏥᏱᎴᎾ. ᎾᏍᎩ ᎯᎦᏍᎪ ᏦᎢ ᎢᏳᏕᏘᏴᏓ ᎠᏗᏍᎬ Ꮭ ᏳᏚᏅᏖᎴ ᎤᏛᏗ ᎤᎵᏏ ᎪᎯᎦ ᏥᎨᏒ ᏄᏰᎵᏛ ᎤᏂᏃᏢ ᎾᎿ ᎠᏂᏴᏫᏯ ᎤᏂᎷᎯᏍᏗ ᎦᏓ ᎠᎲᎢ., ᏲᏎ ᏯᏆᏓᏛᏛᏁ Ꮟ ᏤᎲ ᎡᎵᏏ.
“ᎦᏓᏅᏖᏍᎬ ᏲᏎ ᏱᏥᏯᏛᏛᏁᎢ. ᎩᎶ ᏱᏥᏩᏛᎮ ᎤᎦᏎᏍᏗ ᎯᎠ ᎪᏪᎵ. ᏝᏃ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎢᏳᏍᏗᏓᏂ ᏴᏓᏅᏖᏍᎪ ᎾᏍᎩᏊ ᏲᏕᏘᏴᏓ ᏱᎩ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ.
ᎤᎾᏟᏃᎮᏠᎿ Eagle ᎢᎬᏱ, ᏣᎳᎩ ᏧᎴᎯᏌᏅᎯ ᏧᎸᏫᏍᏓᏁᎯ ᏚᎪᎵᏰᎥ ᏗᏓᏟᎶᏍᏔᏅ ᎾᎿ ᏅᎩ ᏚᎦᏅᏓᏛ ᎠᎴ ᎤᎪᎲ ᏚᏙᎥ Walter Adair ᎾᏍᎩ ᏚᏂᏃᏣᏞ ᎠᏙᎩᏯᏍᎩ ᎠᎧᎻᏗ ᎢᎦᎵᏍᏗᏍᎩ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎫᏫᏍᎫᏫ ᏍᎦᏚᎩ. ᎯᎠ ᎪᏪᎵ ᏗᎦᏃᏣᎵᏍᎩ ᎾᏍᏊ ᎪᏪᎸ ᎣᏍᏓ ᎨᎦᏅᏔ ᎠᏣᎳᎩ John Ridge ᎠᎴ Major Ridge, ᏃᎴᏍᏊ Tesahdaski ᎠᎴ James Foster.
ᏧᎸᏫᏍᏓᏁᎯ ᎤᏛᎪᏔᏅ Eagle ᏄᏍᏛ ᎤᏩᏛᎲ ᎾᎿ Adair ᏚᏙᎥ ᎠᎴ Eagle ᎤᏛᏅ ᎤᎦᏛᏂᏓᏍᏗᎢ. ᎣᏂᏴ, Eagle ᏚᏃᎯᏎᎸ ᎪᏪᎵ ᏧᏂᎸᏫᏍᏓᏁᎯ ᎾᏍᎩ Walter Adair ᎾᎿ ᎦᎵᎴᎩ ᎤᏔᎾ ᎤᏚᏓ ᎨᏒ ᎠᎴ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏄᏰᎶᏕ ᎪᏪᎵ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅ ᏧᎾᎵᏏᏅᏕᎢ ᎤᎪᏓ ᏧᏕᏘᏴᏓ.
ᏙᎯᏳᏃ Eagle ᎤᏛᏅ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎠᎴ ᎠᏂᏏᏓᏁᎸ ᎠᎾᏁᎶᏗ ᎢᎸᏢ ᎤᏂᏢᏗ ᎯᎠ ᏍᎪᎯᏧᏈ ᏁᎵᏍᎪ ᎦᎵᏉᎩ ᏳᏕᏘᏴᏓ ᎪᏪᎵ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅᎢ, ᎤᏓᏅᏖᎸ ᎤᏩᏌ ᎠᎴ ᎤᏙᎢ, Margaret Wermy, ᎢᎸᏢ ᎤᏂᏢᏗ ᎾᎿ ᎠᏂᏣᎳᎩ ᎤᎾᏕᏘᏱᏍᎬ ᎠᏍᏆᎵᏍᎬᎢ, ᎾᏍᎩ ᎡᎵᏊ ᎠᏂᏣᎳᎩ ᏧᎾᏓᎴᏅ ᎠᏰᏟ.
“ᎥᎩᏙᏃ ᎾᏍᏊ ᎤᏤᎵ, ᎣᎩᎾᏚᎵ ᎠᏍᏆᏂᎪᏙᏗ, ᎠᎴ ᎢᎸᏢ ᎠᏢᏗ ᏴᏫ ᎬᏩᏂᎪᏩᏛᏗ ᎾᎿ ᏚᎵᏍᏗ ᎧᎸ ᏥᏓᎵᎮᎵᎪᎢ. ᏲᎩᎾᏚᎵ ᎠᏂᏐᎢ ᎠᏂᏴᏫ ᎤᏂᎪᏩᏛᏗᎢ, ᎠᏂᏣᎳᎩ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ. “ᏙᎯᏳ ᏂᎨᎵᏍᎬ ᏂᎦᏓ ᎤᏂᎪᏩᏛᏗ ᎠᏆᏚᎵᎭ.”
CHC interim Archivist Jerry Thompson ᎠᏗᏍᎬ ᎠᏍᏆᏂᎪᏍᎬ ᎾᎿ ᎪᏪᎵ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅ ᎢᎦ ᎣᏍᏓ ᎠᏍᏆᏂᎪᏔᏅ ᎨᏒᎢ. ᎠᎵᏏᏅᏙᏗ, Thompson ᏚᏟᎶᏍᏔᏁ ᎾᏍᎩ Eagle ᎬᏩᏍᏆᏂᎪᏙᏗ ᎤᏪᏘ ᎪᏪᎵ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅᎢ.
“ᎾᏍᎩ ᎾᎠᏂᎨᏍᏗ ᏔᎵᏧᏈ ᏳᏕᏘᏴᏓ ᎪᏪᎵ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅ, ᎢᎦ ᎣᏍᏓ Ꮟ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬ Thompson. “ ᎯᎠ ᎪᏪᎳᏅᎢ ᎤᏩᏌ ᎢᎦ ᎣᏍᏓ ᎠᎪᏩᏛᏗ ᎬᎪᎵᏱᏓᎾᏍᎩ ᎢᏴ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅᎢ. ᎾᏍᎩᎾ ᎠᎩᏃᎯᏎᎲ ᎠᎴ ᎢᏳᏍᏗ ᏥᎪᏩᏘᏍᎬ, Ꮭ ᎤᎪᎲ ᏱᎨᏎ ᎭᏫᎾᏗᏢ ᎤᏴᏈᏕᏓ ᏱᎨᏎ ᎠᎴ ᏚᏟᎶᏍᏔᏃᏂ ᎠᎴ ᎭᏫᎾᏗᏢ ᎤᏂᎪᎵᏰ, ᎤᏍᏆᏂᎪᏗ ᎨᏒᎢ. ᎠᎪᏩᏛᏗ ᎨᏒ ᎤᎧᏛ ᎩᎳ ᎤᎪᎲ ᎭᏫᎾᏗᏢ ᎪᏪᎵᎢ. ᎠᎴ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎤᎾᎡ ᎾᎿ ᎠᏂᏏᏓᏁᎸ ᎪᎯᏓ ᎣᏍᏓ ᎠᏍᏆᏂᎪᏕ ᎤᎵᏏᏅᏕᎢ ᎯᎠ ᎪᏪᎵ ᎦᎴᏴᏔᏅᎢ ᏬᏌᏂᏴᎢ.”