Charley’s Land

  • David Ress


The status land for descendants of Kaw (Kansas) women and white fathers was somewhat clearer in the 1825 Treaty with the Kansa: the United States would reserve one-square-mile sections of ceded land to twenty-three individuals (eighteen identified by name, the others simply described as the four children on one named man). A small portion of one of those sections of reserved land, never held by “Indian title” in common, eventually came to the grandson of a grantee and would finance a career in law and politics that led that grandson, Charles Curtis, to the vice presidency of the United States, after a Congressional career during which he sponsored the law that carved up tribal lands in Oklahoma and allotted small holdings in severalty to tribal members. The never-completely accepted idea that assimilation would come necessarily from landownership had finally been confirmed, led by a man whose understanding of land tenure was at its root shaped by the “Kaw half breed” grants.


Kaw (Kansa nation) Severalty “Indian title” Dawes Allotment Act Oklahoma land allotment 


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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • David Ress
    • 1
  1. 1.Newport NewsUSA

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