African-Native American Research Forum Archive
Cherokee Freedmen Citizenship Issues
Constitution bans discrimination based on color.
Fact: African descendants of Freedmen are NOT permitted to be citizens of the nations --- based on a CDIB card which will never be issued to them. The rationale is that their blood quantum cannot be deteremined.
Fact: Descendants of Intermarried White persons are welcome in the nation. They have 0%Cherokee blood.
Fact: Descendants of Delaware Indians are welcome into the nation. They have 0% Cherokee blood.
Fact: Membership in the nation requires that one descends from persons whose names appear on the "Final Rolls of Citizens and Freedmen of the Five Civilized Tribes."
Fact: Current practice is that if you happen to descend from one whose name is on the FREEDMEN
Fact: The final rolls deliberatly left out the blood quantum of the Freedmen when they were created and the nations take full advantage of this by happily telling all Freedman descendants to "go and come back with proof of blood quantum."
Fact: Freedmen descendants are sent into a continuous cycle with no end to seek what they were historicall prevented from including when admitted to citizenship. This is comparable to the grandfather clauses used in the Old South to prevent African Americans from the vote. If your grandfather voted then you could vote. This conveniently excluded all who had thus descended from slaves.
Fact: ALTHOUGH the nation contintues to state that one must be on the Final Rolls of Citizens AND Freedmen. What is not stated is that if you are descended FROM a Freedman you will NEVER gain admission.
Fact: The efforts of African Americans who descend from Black CITIZENS of the Five Civilized Tribes are treated with hostility by many though they were present in the nations from BEFORE removal till after statehood.
Fact: The presence of Africans in the nations was and is considered valid by many current citizens only when blacks are referred to as slaves. Full human beings with rights of citizens are looked upon with disdain by many members of the nation. The primary difference between the Freedmen and others who were in the nation is color.
Fact: The Oklahoma Slave Narratives of the WPA contains the narratives of man Indian Territory slaves.
[originally posted 26 May 1999]
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