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Indian Pioneer Papers - Index

Indian Pioneer History Project for Oklahoma
Date: December 20, 1937
Name: Mrs. Virginia Ann Roach
Post Office: Cache, Oklahoma
Date of Birth: September 14, 1870
Place of Birth: Navarro Co., Corsicana, Texas
Place of Birth: 
Information on father: 
Place of Birth: 
Information on mother: 
Field Worker: Ophelia D. Vestal
Interview # 9461

Although I am a pioneer of this country and have lived among the Indians quite a lot of my life. I stayed at home most all of the time watching and caring for my children.

I came here in November 1901, from Texas. I was born near Corsicana, Texas. When we came to Lawton it was known as "Ragtown".

Many times Indians would come to my tent and sit for hours and hours, laughing, talking and making signs. I never did try to understand them but if they ever came to my house for anything, I told them to go get what they wanted or to show me what they wanted. If it was a drink they would lead me out to the well in the yard. They were never known to harm anyone.

J. Mack Harris was the sub-agent at the Little Red Store west of Cache. The Indians gathered there for religious meeting and when men sometime went out riding and rode up and down the creeks, sometimes they would run into big pow-wows where the Indians would be taking mescal and peyote buttons. When indulging in either the mescal or peyote the effects, they thought, caused the Indians to see some of their good friends who had died and the Great Spirit whom they worshiped as their God.

When the Indians saw squirrels they thought the squirrels were little babies who had died and had come back to live in that kind of life.

These Indians would not eat fish, and would hardly ever sleep on a feather bed. If a relative died on a feather bed, they tore it up, also the pillow, scattering the feathers in all directions. They first carried the dead relatives belongings to the grave with them, then they were carried out of sight down on creeks and sometimes buried; when these belongings were not buried, white people would get them because some things were valuable but when the Indians found out the white people were doing this, they took axes with them and chopped up the belongings of the person who had died.

My brother worked at Fort Sill when Geronimo and his band were held captives. Government rations were issued to them. When the day came around for them to receive their sugar, it was poured out on blankets and they ate it from their hands.

Quanah Parker is known to have had more than seven wives in the earlier days. If he grew tired of any woman or mad at her, he would trade her to another Indian for a pony or some cattle.

I have lived very close to Quanah Parker's home. He hired white women to come into his home and teach his wives to cook. Some became good cooks. A few would work in groups, some cooked and some kept house; their duties were divided. Each wife had her own room and his room was off to itself.

When Quanah Parker went on camping trips he told the wives and children which ones of them could go. If they all wanted to go, some could not go if he said they could not go.

Too-nicy was a big, fat woman; if anyone went with Quanah she did. He loved her more than any of his wives and she and Quanah Parker rode horseback lots together. He was a good chief and liked well by the white people. He was a great Medicine Man too.

Transcribed for OKGenWeb by Lola Crane coolbreze@cybertrails.com  November 6, 2001.