The mighty Pushmataha—Choctaw, American, Founding (Grand)Father of Oklahoma. He backed down from no one, including Shawnee Chief Tecumseh and General & President Andrew Jackson. He helped save America in the War of 1812. The Choctaw Moses, like that prophet of old, he led his great people into a distant and frightening land, but was not able to cross into it with them.
iHeartRadio star Gwin Faulconer-Lippert and John explore why Pushmataha is far more than the name of a southeastern Oklahoma county. It’s the sixth episode of our weekly OKLAHOMA GOLD! radio program and podcast. Go HERE to listen to them all! Future episodes explore the great heroes, events, and movements of Oklahoma History.
Go HERE to read John’s extended, illustrated blog about Pushmataha.
Oklahoma native and Mississippi resident Katherine Roche Buchanan painted this magnificent portrait of Pushmataha. The Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians presented it to the state of Mississippi in 2001. It hangs in the Mississippi Hall of Fame, Old Capitol Museum, in Jackson. Courtesy Katherine Roche Buchanan. (www.katherinebuchananartist.com)
Legendary Shawnee chief Tecumseh, with whom Pushmataha squared off concerning whether the Choctaws and Chickasaws would side with the Americans or the British in the War of 1812.
Pushmataha in his uniform as Brigadier General of the United States Army. The American military and political hierarchy admiringly referred to him as “The Indian General.”
Western Arkansas Territory, purple, was converted to Indian Territory (future Oklahoma) in 1824. The Central strip, red, was converted (also future Oklahoma) in 1828. Pushmataha relentlessly negotiated for the Choctaws to settle the verdant approximately southeast (lower right) quarter of this enormous country.