American Indian Records and Resources
The American Indian Archives
Since 1934 the Oklahoma Historical Society American Indian Archives have housed American Indian records for numerous tribes. The records came to the Oklahoma Historical Society after Congress passed legislation giving the OHS custody of the materials. These records include a variety of official documents and information relating to tribes in Indian and Oklahoma Territory. The archives include a significant number of records pertaining to the Five Tribes as well as other tribes.
The Research Division is an affiliate of the National Archives and Records Administration.
Dawes Rolls and American Indian Ancestry
The following resources are available for researching your Indian ancestry. If you are searching for a connection to one of the Five Tribes—Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Muscogee (Creek), and Seminole—consult the Dawes Final Roll. This final roll is the basis for determining eligibility for tribal citizenship.
Additional Indian Records and Resources1896 Applications for Enrollment, Five Tribes
American Indian and Alaskan Native Documents in the Congressional Serial Set: 1817–1899 (from the University of Oklahoma)
American Indian Censuses on Microfilm, various tribes
Chilocco Indian School Index
Foreman Transcripts, various tribes
Indian Agency Employees, Official Register of the United States, various tribes
American Indian Archives Index, various tribes
Individual Indian Files, Plains tribes
Litton Papers, Five Tribes
Finding Your American Indian Ancestors (PDF)
American Indian Removal
More than sixty different tribes relocated to present-day Oklahoma during the nineteenth century. Although some tribes moved voluntarily, most were forcibly removed from their homelands and assigned to a reservation in Indian Territory. To learn more, view an outline and timeline of Indian removal.
The Office of American Indian Culture and Preservation
This office was established in 2013 by the Board of Directors of the Oklahoma Historical Society. The purpose of this office is to strengthen the ties between the federally recognized tribes of Oklahoma and the OHS, to work closely with tribal cultural preservation staff and assist with issues requiring expertise and guidance with culturally important materials, to conduct oral history projects with tribal elders, to provide workshops regarding preservation issues, to enhance collections development of American Indian materials, and to enhance research opportunities for tribal groups or individuals regarding the OHS collections.