Assessing Historic Sites: Elements to Consider

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Assessing Historic Sites: Elements to Consider. Charles S. Wallis, Jr. State Historic Preservation Office a division of the Oklahoma Historical Society. Acknowledgements. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

Text of Assessing Historic Sites: Elements to Consider

  • Assessing Historic Sites: Elements to ConsiderCharles S. Wallis, Jr.

    State Historic Preservation Officea division of the Oklahoma Historical Society

  • AcknowledgementsMaps of Oklahoma shown in this presentation are taken from Historical Atlas of Oklahoma, 4th ed. 2006. OU Press, C. Goins & D. GobleCherokee County, Camp Gruber site images are from LopezGarcia Group, Dallas, TX cultural resource reports prepared for the Oklahoma Military Department (OANG)

  • Assessing site eligibility: With emphasis directed towards evaluation of Late Historic Period FarmsteadsFactors to consider:AgeComplexityIntegritySignificance

  • Site also needs to be evaluated within a Historic ContextIdentificationPlacement within a cultural themePlacement within its geographical and chronological limits

  • Historic PeriodDefining historic versus prehistoricDates vary depending on regionProto-historic (transition from pre- to post-contact period)Oklahoma (1541 versus 1719)Coronado versus La Harpes expeditionsUpper end date for consideration (WWII)Cold War Era

  • French and Spanish Explorers

  • Assessment Based on AgeEarly Exploration PeriodDeer Creek & Bryson Paddock sites (Kay Co.)Early- to mid-1700s (with French trading connection)Spanish Fort (historic Wichita village, Jefferson Co.)Mid-1700s to early-1800s (site attacked by Spanish 1758)Removal Period 1820s-1850sTypically associated with one of the five Civilized TribesLocation of site may depend on degree of bloodSlave owner/plantation oriented versus non-slave ownerSites are generally located in eastern Oklahoma

  • Indian Territory, 1855-1866

  • Indian Territory, 1889

  • Northeastern Oklahoma Tribes

  • Historic Context: Pre-Statehood Settlement PatternPeriod 1889-1906Land RunsAllotmentLotteriesSealed Bids

  • Land Grab: Anglo-American Settlement PatternLands Opened by RunsUnassigned Lands - April 22, 1889Iowa, Sac & Fox, Pottawatomie & Shawnee - September 22, 1891Cheyenne & Arapaho - April 19, 1892Cherokee Outlet - September 16, 1893Kickapoo - May 23, 1895

  • 1889-1906 Land Openings

  • Settlement Pattern cont.Lands Opened by AllotmentTonkawa - 1891 (now Kay County)Pawnee - 1892 (now Pawnee CountyPonca - 1904 (now Kay & Noble counties)Oto-Missouri - 1904 (now Noble County)Kaw-1906 (now Kay County)Osage - 1906 (now Osage County)

  • Allotments cont. (Five Civilized Tribes)Choctaws 1897Chickasaws 1897Seminoles 1898Creeks 1901Cherokees 1902No surplus lands available for allotment in eastern Indian TerritoryLand acquired through other means

  • Settlement Pattern cont.Lands Opened by LotteryWichita & Caddo - July 9 to August 6, 1901Comanche, Kiowa and Apache - July 9 to August 6, 1901

    Lands Opened by Sealed BidsBig Pasture - December 1906

  • Proposed State of Sequoyah, 1905

  • Determining site eligibility: ConsiderationsComplexity of siteSingle component versus multi-componentEthnicity Period(s) of occupationPre-1890 versus post-1890*

    *Post-1890s sites are more common due to large migration into territory as result of runs, lotteries, and purchases of allotments

  • Integrity and Significance:Both factors in decisionIntegrity:Presence of features (foundation stones, water well, depressions denoting possible cellar or cistern, vegetative plantings, etc.) Demonstrates farmstead layout (integrity)

  • Integrity and Significance cont.Significance:Demonstrating the property has significance determined according to one or more of the following:Criterion ACriterion BCriterion CCriterion D

  • Integrity and Significance cont.Criterion A: associated with events that have made a significant contribution to the broad patterns of our historysettlement of a community or important battle field siteCriterion B: associated with the lives of persons significant in our pastGeorge Guess (aka Geo. Guyst, Geo. Guist, Geo. Gist)Criterion C: embody distinctive characteristics of a type, period, or method of construction, or represent a significant and distinguishable entity whose components may lack individual distinction brick kiln or charcoal production/operation facility Criterion D: may yield information important in history or prehistory archeological sites

  • An ExampleHistoric Context: Cherokee Settlement PatternCamp Gruber: Native American Cherokee versus Cherokee Freedman Defined by allotment records and archeological sites

  • Early Cherokee Settlement

  • Cherokee Nation 1889

  • Case StudiesNannie Sleeper allotment, site 34MS404John Benge allotment, site 34MS406Manard Baptist Church, cemetery & school house, site 34MS407Sequoyahs CabinEliza Bressman allotment, site 34PT141

  • Plan Map: Site 34MS404 Nannie Sleeper Allotment

  • 34MS404 Builders Trench

  • 34MS404 ceramics

  • 34MS404 ceramics

  • Settlement pattern 1896 GLO survey

  • Circa 1910 Cherokee Nation Township Map

  • Nannie Sleeper Allotment**although chain of title shown below states site area was designated as homestead this is incorrect

  • Archival/ historical reviewAccording to 1898 GLO map (1896 field survey), site 34MS404 is in a wooded tract, at fork in road north of an orchard, with a house shown west of orchard in Section 21, not Section 16 (area of site)No house is shown for site area on either 1898, 1901 or 1936 mapsHouse in section south of 34MS404 is situated on Lewis Sleepers allotmentArtifact sample documents primarily 1830-50s occupation, with hint of later waresPossible history of single Cherokee family use, eventually conveyed to US. Govt. in 1937

  • Site 34MS404 eligibility cont.Nanny French (nee Sleeper) also known as Cricket married Louis G. Sleeper (a Texas born white) in 1896They had a daughter named Nannie, born between 1900 & 1903, who died as a child in 1906Nannies allotment is first recorded for the record in 1909, a date after parents had inherited the propertyHomestead allotment (40 acres) was selected within sections 6 and 11, not 16 where site 34MS404 is situatedPre-allotment Cherokee farmstead use of area supported by evidence, whether by this family remains uncertain

  • Outcome of Review: Site determined eligible by consensusEven though a clear association of site 34MS404 with the Sleeper family cannot be established, location has the potential to provide information concerning pre-allotment Cherokee farmsteadsSite contains in situ features, important for defining site lay outArtifacts support initial Cherokee settlement of the area

  • John Benge Allotment Site 34MS406

  • Site 34MS406 Glasswares

  • Site 34MS406 Plan Map

  • Site 34MS406 Chain of Title

  • Archival/ historical researchJohn Benge born circa 1889, resided with father Martin V. Benge who lived in Township east of J. Benges allotment (US Census 1900)Site 34MS406 on J. Benge 50 acre homestead allotmentJ. Benges homestead had all restrictions removed in 1921 when property conveyed to Adna Starr Benge, relationship unknown but possibly wife of a brotherAccording to 1920 Muskogee County Court records, J. Benge resided with wife and family at Fort Lyon, COAdna Benge a Fort Gibson subscription school teacher, rented a home in Nash Township (US Census 1920), but possibly not area of site 34MS406

  • Archival cont.In 1923, declaration of trust mentions Benge Farm, but for Section 22, not location of siteIn 1927, after failure to pay mortgage, property with site 34MS406 auctioned by mortgage company for $50 to M. W. Drumheller, an out of state owner (sale price suggests no home present)By 1937, after teaching for 42 years and as a resident of Fort Gibson, Adna Benge retiredIn 1934 property conveyed to Herbert Kreider, who in 1930 was listed as a white renter residing in Nash Township (US Census 1930)In 1942 property purchased by declaration of taking by the US Govt.

  • Summary of reviewNo building noted for area, 1896 GLO surveyChain of title documents multiple ownersArchival data unclear as to date of initial residency Artifact sample supports early-20th century occupancyOccupants likely share croppers or renters, not initial Cherokee allottee1941 aerial photo (of poor resolution) appears to still show two to four buildings in site area

  • Outcome of review: Site determined not eligibleAssociation of site 34MS406 with John Benge may only be through receipt of a homestead allotment for the tract, not actual occupationAdna Benges occupation of site 34MS406 also not established, possible absentee owner onlySharecropper occupation also a possibilityArtifact sample supports 20th Century occupation, likely later Anglo owner use only

  • Manard Baptist Church, cemetery & school house, site 34MS407

  • Site 34MS407 Plan Map

  • Site 34MS407 Chain of Title

  • Outcome of review: Site determined eligible by consensusDocumented early church and school useCemetery reflects settlement patternUncommon site for region, has information potential for addressing post-allotment Cherokee Nation sites other than farmsteads

  • Questioning documented History: Examining the recordAn example: Sequoyahs cabin site, Oklahoma Historical Society propertyListed on the National Register of Historic Places as a National Historic Landmark (NHL)

  • Assessment Site is already listed on the National Register of Historic Places, assessment already determinedThere is however the question, is this the actual location of Sequoyahs home? Was the house moved in from somewhere else in 1936?Should be verifiable by conducting an archeologi