by Ashley Hendricks, Digital Technician
Beginning in late December and through January of 2009, our Cherokee Nation township plat maps underwent the process of oversized document digitization. There are a total of 236 township maps that include townships 9 north through 29 north. An interesting characteristic of these maps is the meticulous detail with which the ownership of allotments is shown. Each map contains the names, statuses, and allotment numbers of the individual owners. The maps were probably printed after statehood in 1907, by the Indian Territory Map Company in Muskogee, but the information comes from the Dawes Commission which began its work in 1893. These maps provide potentially useful context for an individual’s share of the portioned land, e.g., the individual’s neighbors; vicinity to geographical items such as rivers, states, or other tribal lands; and relative size of their land. Each allottee may be researched in depth in the OHS Research Center. Enrollment packets which often include familial information may be ordered.
Available for detailed viewing in PDF format, the Cherokee Nation township maps are located in our Indian Archives Collection of the catalog. The link to this collection is in our Core Collections drop-down menu on the main Archives search page. When you click on the Indian Archives Collection link, you will be taken to the summary information for the collection. Navigate the contents using the menu on the left; you will notice that the last menu item is Maps. Click on the “plus” sign next to Maps. To view the Cherokee Nation township maps, click on Cherokee Nation Maps and scroll down to Map: 69. They continue through Maps: 305.