Testimony taken by the Committee on Indian Affairs - 1885
Testimony taken by the Committee on Indian Affairs
1885


ELIAS C. BOUDINOT.

ELIAS C. BOUDINOT sworn and examined. By the Chairman:
Question. Mr. Boudinot, are you in any way connected with the Cherokee Nation?—Answer. Only as a native citizen, sir.
Q. You are not connected with it in any official position'—A. Only as a native of the Cherokee Nation.
Q. What is your age, Mr. Boudinot?—A. I am forty-nine years of age.
Q. Are you conversant personally with what they have been doing for the last few years?—A. Yes, sir.
Q. Have you any knowledge of the transaction in relation to the Cherokee Strip?—A. Yes, sir; I have knowledge from papers and information I got.
Q. Have you any personal knowledge of any use these men have made of money with Cherokee Indians?—A. I have no personal knowledge, sir.
Q. Do you know of any one who can give us any testimony in that regard?—A. Yes, sir.
Q. if you can direct us in that matter, we shall be glad. Do you know of anybody, within our reach, who can be produced to-morrow morning, who can throw any light upon this subject of the Cherokee lease

By Mr. Harrison:

Q. Yes, either tomorrow or hereafter?—A. Yes, air.

By the Chairman:

Q. Will you do us the favor, with the help of Mr. Christy, the Ser­geant-at-arms of the Senate, to bring to us anybody who you think can throw any light upon this subject?—A. Yes, sir.
Q. Well, give us the names of some you think of?—A. Richard M. Wolfe.

By Mr. Harrison:

Q. Is he here?—A.. Yes, sir. He is one of the delegates of the Cherokee Nation, representing that nation here before Congress.

By the Chairman:

Q. Go on and give us what other names you think of.—A. H. T. Landrum.
By Mr. Harrison:
Q. Is he here, too?—A. Yes, sir.
Q. Do any others occur to you?—A. W. A. Phillips might throw some light upon the subject.

By Mr. Ingalls:

Q. Is it the Mr. Phillips who was formerly a member of Congress from Kansas—A. Yes, sir.

By the Chairman :

Q. Does any other name occur to you?—A. There is an old citizen of the Cherokee Nation here, but I do not know that he was present at the council.
Q. What is his name?—A. Jule M. Bryan.
Q. Have you reason to know that he has any knowledge of the trans­action?—A. I could not say, sir. The fact of his being a citizen of the nation and having business at the capital, he might have been there at the time the lease was made.

By Mr. Harrison:

Q. Can you see him and ascertain whether he knows anything about the matter?—A. Yes, sir.

By the Chairman :

Q. Do you know of others who are in the city?—A. No, sir; I cannot think of any just now.
Q. Or anybody outside of the city?—A. George W. Bushyhead, the chief, might be able to give some information.
Q. Have you any information that leads you to suppose that we could get any information from him?—A. I have a copy of the message the chief sent to the legislature.
Q. And from that you infer that he is in a position where he might be able to give information ?

By Mr. Ingalls:

Q. Will you leave that with us?—A. It is in a scrap-book I have.

By the Chairman :

Q. Now, we will give you the services of Mr. Christie to bring in from the city and beyond the city, if you will give us the names of any gentlemen whom you think can throw any light upon this matter.

By Mr. Ingalls:

Q. Perhaps there are other names beyond the limits of the District that you can give us? —A. There is John F. Lyon.

By Mr. Harrison:

Q. Where does he reside?—A. He lives at Tahlequah, in the Indian Territory.
Q. Well, is there any other?—A. Clement M. Rogers.
Q. Where does he reside?—A. He resides in Claremore, in the Indian Territory; also Samuel Smith.
Q. Where does he reside?—A. I do not know his post-office address, bat he resides in the vicinity of Tahlequah; also L. B. Bell.

By the Chairman:

Q. He has been already summoned?.—A. No, sir; J. M. Bell has been summoned.
Q. Where does he live—A. He is at Vinita, in the Indian Territory.
Q, Are these all you think of?—A. Yes, sir; these are all that occur to me now.
Q. What information have you in respect to them that leads you to suppose that these men can give us any information Now we will take the first name—Lyon. What will he be able to tell us—A. He said he was one of the attorneys for the lessees, and that he drew the lease himself, and that he still is under the employ of these lessees, and I should suppose he would know all about it.
Q. Did he say anything that led you to believe that there was anything improper connected with the making of these leases?—A. No, sir; I have never heard him make any statement of the kind. I have seen statements in the papers.
Q. Now, we'll take this man Rogers—who is he?—A. He is the author of the bill directing the chief to make the lease.
Q. Who is Mr. Smith?—A. Mr. Smith is the author of another bill on the same subject. One of these bills authorizes the lease in general terms, and the other authorizes the making of the leases to these particular parties. Mr. Rogers is the author of the bill authorizing the leases to these particular parties, and Smith is the author of the bill authorizing the general leases. Mr. Bell is the collector of taxes in the western part of the Territory.
Q. Was the Rogers bill adopted?—A. Yes, sir.
Q. Mr. Smith is the collector referred to by Mr. Drumm, is he not ?—A. Yes. sir.
Q. Have you any personal knowledge of what he knows about this matter?—A. Nothing, except that I know he was the collector of the taxes.
Q. You infer from the position he held that he could give us infor­mation?—A. Yes, sir.
Q. You have no knowledge as to whether there existed any corruption or improper use of money in connection with these leases?—A. None at all. I know nothing personally about the matter. I will produce the message of the chief if the committee desire it t
A. We would like you to have produced before us, if you can, any day of this investigation, any witness that you think will be of service to the committee in throwing light upon this subject. If you will furnish the names I will tell Mr. Christy to summon them.


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