Today, we’re going to approach this a bit differently. I sent an email to someone in Detroit asking if they wanted to help with this, and they agreed. Since I can’t sing, I’ll go through some of this content and then invite a volunteer to help with the singing. We need a volunteer so we can move on.

This first part will be interactive. As we read through the song, remember it was written in the 1830s, so it contains some jargon and slang from that era. Let’s go through some of the terms and people mentioned to provide context.

Key Figures and Terms:

  1. John Eaton: Do we know who John Eaton is? John Eaton was the Secretary of War at the time of the Choctaw removal.
  2. George Gaines: George Gaines was a Choctaw agent involved in the removal and acted as an interpreter on behalf of the Choctaw Nation. He was a friend of the Choctaw Nation and left with the chiefs in protest of what happened on the treaty grounds.
  3. Take a Drone: Does anyone know what this means? I think it has to do with a ferry, but I’m not sure.
  4. Memphis Town to the Draw: Talks about a journey from Memphis. It mentions figures like Uncle Sam and old Nick. Old Nick seems to refer to a historical figure.
  5. Greenwood Leflore: He was the chief of the Leflore District, one of the three district chiefs of the Choctaws. He sold out many of his people for money and didn’t come with them.
  6. David Folsom: He was a chief of the Okla Falaya District and replaced Leflore after the treaty. He was elected post-removal.
  7. Indian Question: Refers to the broader issues surrounding Native American policies at the time.
  8. Old Nick: Refers to a type of history or folklore figure.
  9. Removal Agents: John Fulton, Thomas McGee, and Thomas Wolfe were all removal agents mentioned in the song.
  10. Captain Gordon: He was the boat captain for the Brandywine, which transported many Choctaws.
  11. Arkansas Post: This was a drop-off point for many Choctaws in 1831. They waited there with little to no supplies for about six weeks.
  12. Captain Brown: He was one of the dispersing officers in charge of ensuring supplies were delivered.
  13. Jawbone: Refers to a musical instrument or a term used in the song to keep rhythm while walking.

The Song

Now, let’s go through the song. I’ll need a volunteer to help sing. It’s a walking song, similar to the folk music of Alabama and Mississippi, designed to keep people in step and in tune.

“Jackson Sent the Secretary of War”

vbnetCopy codeJackson sent the Secretary of War
To the Indian of the long walk out
Jawbone walk I say walk
Oh John, I'm gonna walk away

He tells us go away
He no longer says you can stay
Walk Oh jawbone walk I say
Walk alone on my way

To the Arkansas, I got a damn
The white man's lawless oh
Come on and go along with me
Oh come on and go along with me

Farewell to our happy flames
And to you too brother beans
Oh come on let's get along
Oh come on let us get along

Our only friend in the time of need
He's the man we love indeed
A blessings on his frosty brown
A blessings on his frosty gray

By talking about games at Memphis town
We took a drama and over Moreland
Although we saw they died cash
And we are undone

The diamond catch and we are under
The our fate good or bad we have cause to be sad
The Indian question is now over
The Indian questions now

When we have gone to the West
You will cut in for the best
We shall never think it so
We shall never think it's over

John H deep & hamill floor
Never can rise anymore
Or their laurels or the rounds
With her girls for the brows

John H Eaton is a pub
With old Nick kosher DISA
Were their moral for his ground
With a moral for his ground

We hate the fool with all of our money
He better keep out of sight
It is eatin we do me
It is eaten we do me

At Dancing Rabbit he speaks smarter
But his forked tongue and shallow heart
Was not to mangle Java 8
Was not to make wait

They say fees pin latch them again
And keep him in eternal pain
To this we sing with louder noise
To the sustaining of loudness

Farewell now secretary joining
Made his path through life he thorny
Oh Johnny the secretary Johnny
Of Johnny the secretary

John Green of the floor is chief no more
The tyrants reins narrower
The simplest chief called planets
The simplest chief of all plans

He was the man that took a Brahma
Folsom's Uncle Sam's Cleverley scribe
I'll walk you jawbone walk away
I'll walk you jog on the walk I said

He turned against the orphan boy
For one little Negro boy
Heaven blast him do I say
Heaven blast him do I say

Should never again he crossed our path
We'll give him the Devas wrath
For he is a man that took a bribe
For he is a man to the product

Of all the agents of the West
Rector and Fulton are the best
On tiny boats we did sail
On those boats that crabbiness

The good old steamer Brandywine
We have held left behind
Farewell captain Borden and his crew
Farewell captain Gordon a screw

The damnedest time we ever saw
Was at the coast of Arkansas
The meanest place in all the world
The meanest place in all the world

70 sleeps there were laid
Well it's no too honest inhale
Oh the hard times we did see
Oh the hard times we did see

It's noted and hailed I do tell
Though what helped us all
Oh the hard times we did see
All of our times we didn't see

Look to the west our chief did say
Every dog will have his day
They are to be not far away
The salted pork and damn for beef

Enough to make me devour a thief
This in hard times I do say
This is hard times I do say
Farewell now to hold the game

Him hope to never see
Walk out jawbone walk I say
Walk a jawbone walk away
I think at home he'd better stay

And save himself a friend
Walk alone walk I say
Walk a job on the walk away
The little dog we didn't ask

The town of small but growing fast
Captain around there resides
Over the agents he presides
He is a man that's true to us

He is a man that's true
Console our interpreter is mr. Wong
He is a man that's for all
The Jody's fellow of all approved

The Jovi's fellow of all through
The following verses were composed last winter
By the chopped-off will immigrated to the west
He was the colonel PP pitch

Let's party I think he was educated in Kentucky
And paid some attention so he was a gentleman
I went to the Choctaw kademan up in Kentucky
And you know by an eighteen thirty years

Only Francine was there
At least how many do you think we're going
By the time maybe hundred nine
So like I said again

This was something we found in the pitchman papers up at the Gilcrease

Thank you all for participating and for those who volunteered to sing. This historical song offers a glimpse into the experiences and sentiments of the time.

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Ryan Spring – Choctaw Nation

Today, we’re going to approach this a bit differently. I sent an email to someone in Detroit asking if they wanted to help with this, and they agreed. Since I can’t sing, I’ll go through some of this content and then invite a volunteer to help with the singing. We

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