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African-Native American Genealogy Forum

Choctaw freedmen: "Bean slaves", 1854

My great-great- grandfather, Thomas Drew, was fired as Superintendent of Indian Affairs for the Southern Superintendency in 1855, and I've recently discovered that it has to do with his mishandling of a complicated case involving a family of slaves who had been freed by their Choctaw owner, a Mr. Bean. Unfortunately, the records in the National Archives provide only a few hints about what happened. it seems that after the slaves were freed, they were kidnapped and re-sold into slavery in Arkansas, and Drew's superior ordered him to do everything he could to get them restored to freedom. He flubbed the job, badly, and ended by helping someone who had purchased some of the kidnapped ex-slaves. The War Department became involved, and there were jurisdictional squabble between the government of Arkansas, the Choctaw Nation, and the Commissioner of Indian Affairs. What I'd love to know is how the case ended, and what happened to the people in question. Might there be any descendants of the Bean family on this forum who know the story?


18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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