theadanews.com - Ada, Oklahoma

Living

February 11, 2014

Final resting place of Gov. Colbert still a question

Ada — The exact burial place of the second governor of the Chickasaw Nation, Governor Daugherty (Winchester) Colbert, is somewhat of a mystery.

Former Gov. Winchester Colbert served the Chickasaw Nation for three terms - 1858-1860, 1862-1864 and 1864-1866. He led the tribe through tumultuous times that included the runup to Civil War and the actual War Between the States.  

While his leadership during this difficult time is certain, there appears to be some question about the precise burial place of the distinguished governor, whose appearance and fashion is often compared to Abraham Lincoln.

A 1940 biography of Winchester Colbert tells how the former Governor in 1866 sold his home near Oil Springs in the Chickasaw Nation and moved to Atoka County, Choctaw Nation. 

Gov. Colbert and his wife, Annica (Kemp) Colbert, later returned to the Chickasaw Nation and made their home with their son Humphrey Colbert on property located about 2 miles west of “the present town of Frisco, Johnston County.”

The article, written by John Bartlett Meserve, went on to say when the Governor died in 1880, he was buried in a family cemetery in a crudely marked grave on the property near Frisco.

His widow, Annica, returned to the home in Oil Springs. She died in 1884 and was buried in the family graveyard at Oil Springs.

Information about Colbert Cemetery published by the Pontotoc County Historical and Genealogical Society fixes the grave of son Humphrey Colbert. The account includes a story of the son who asked to be buried next to his father, and of his father’s grave being subsequently bulldozed and covered with cement.  

Other accounts on geology websites, such as deancrocker.com, lists Gov. Colbert’s place of death as Atoka County.

Pontotoc County Connection

Other evidence suggests Gov. Colbert’s grave was actually located in Pontotoc County, Okla.

Writing about the first oil produced in Oklahoma, historian and Choctaw Muriel H. Wright (1889-1975) describes an 1872 meeting at Gov. Colbert’s home.  Excerpts of the 1926 article describe a meeting among certain citizens of the Choctaw and Chickasaw Nations at Gov. Colbert’s home in old Pontotoc County, Chickasaw Nation, in February 1872.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Living
AP Video
Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home Calif. Investigators Re-construct Fatal Bus Cras Mayor Rob Ford Launches Re-election Campaign Appellate Court Hears Okla. Gay Marriage Case
Stocks
Poll

For years, Oklahoma was a mostly Democratic state. In recent years, there has been a swing to Republican affiliation. Have you changed your political affiliation to Republican?

Yes
No
     View Results