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The Opening of Oklahoma


affiliated: Closely connected to

allotment: A piece of a whole. During the opening of Oklahoma, tribally-held lands were broken up and assigned to individuals.

amendment: An addition or change.

assessed: Determine the value of.

assimilate: To adopt the characteristics and practice the customs of the dominant culture.

boomers: Settlers who wanted Indian Territory opened for non-Indian settlement. In trying to force opening, boomers would sneak into Indian Territory and attempt to establish settlements.

Bureau of Indian Affairs: The federal agency tasked with implementing American Indian policy

cede/cession: Give up.

circumvent: To go around.

claim: To take or assert ownership.

concentration: The US policy that reduced tribally controlled land and confined Indians to reservations

convenience: Something that reduces effort or difficulty.

corruption: Using one’s official power for dishonest purposes or personal gain.

cow chips: Dried cow dung.

dissolution: The closing down or termination of.

expeditions:A journey by a group for a purpose such as exploration, research, or war.

frontier: Wilderness or areas with few settlers or towns.

homesteaders: Individuals attempting to develop functioning farms where that type of agriculture had not been practiced before.

justify: Provide logical reasons why a claim should be considered accurate or correct.

improved: A piece of land that has something constructed on it, like a well, house, or barn.

Indian Removal Act: The law passed in 1830 that gave the president power to negotiate with tribes with the goals of taking control of their land and moving the tribe west.

indigenous: The original or earliest known inhabitant of a place.

infrastructure: All of the things needed to do something; in the oil industry, pipelines, seismic equipment, trucks, storage facilities, refineries are necessary to acquire and sell the product. These are examples of infrastructure.

intensively: The approach to agriculture that seeks to achieve maximum production.

lottery: A drawing used to distribute land parcels by chance.

nomadic: Groups that move from place to place, usually seasonally, within a defined area.

non-interference: Avoiding involvement.

parcel: A distinct piece of land.

platted: Mapping and planning the use of land.

plenary: Ultimate or supreme authority.

proclamation: A public or official announcement.

public domain: Land belonging to the nation, managed by state or federal government.

reservations: Areas where many American Indians were confined along with other tribal members before the Dawes Act divided Indian land into individual allotments.

sealed-bid auction: A type of transaction in which participants submit their offers at the same time. The person who made the highest offer wins.

settlers: A person who moves to a new area with the intention of staying.

social history: The study of how people lived their day-to-day lives.

sod home: A dwelling made of dirt bricks.

sooners: Individuals participating in the land runs that snuck in before the official start time.

sovereignty: The power to govern without outside interference

sparsely: Not crowded

stipulations: Requirements that must be met.

stockade: A defensive wall.

subsistence: The minimum amount of resources needed for survival.

surplus: Extra

surveying: Examine and record the area and features of (an area of land) so as to construct a map, plan, or description.

sustain: To support well enough that something continues.

trust: Controlling the property of another. In this context, the US government held individual Indian allotments for various periods of time, meaning Indians could not sell their land.

widow: A woman whose husband has died.