Saturday, September 11, 2010

Captain Atoka: Choctaw Chief And Confederate Defender

From Confederate Digest:

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Captain Atoka: Choctaw Chief and Confederate Defender

This simple monument, standing in front of the Atoka County Courthouse, Atoka, Oklahoma, memorializes the man for whom both the city and the county were named: Captain Atoka Oshlatubee. Born about 1782, Atoka was a noted athlete, a respected leader, and Chief of the Pushmataha District in the Choctaw Nation. He signed the treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek in 1830 and led a band of Choctaws from Mississippi on the "Trail of Tears" to settle in the area now known as Oklahoma, in 1834. Atoka died during the War Between the States. Like most Native Americans in the Indian Territory (Oklahoma), Atoka was a strong supporter of the Confederate States of America in their bid for Southern Independence.

A large Confederate supply base, Boggy Depot, was located just north of Atoka, where the Butterfield Overland Mail Route met with the Texas Road. On February 13, 1864, Union Colonel William A. Philips entered the area with some 1500 invading Union Troops to whom he had given these orders:

"I take you with me to clean out the Indian Nation south of the river and drive away and destroy rebels. Let me say a few words to you that you are not to forget .... Those who are still in arms are rebels, who ought to die. Do not kill a prisoner after he has surrendered. But I do not ask you to take prisoners. I ask you to make your footsteps severe and terrible." -- Colonel William A. Philips, to his men before beginning the campaign

Approaching the Boggy Depot, Colonel Phillips' invading hoard made a surprise attack on about 90 vastly outnumbered Native American Confederate soldiers with no artillary, camped on the banks of the Middle Boggy River. The Yankees killed forty-seven - more than half of the Confederates. No Union soldiers perished in the battle. Among the Confederate dead were those wounded who had been left behind when their comrades retreated. They were found on the battlefield with their throats slashed - murdered by the Yankees.

Colonel Phillips said that the wicked deeds of his army brought peace. If genocide is peace, then he spoke the truth.

Posted by J. Stephen Conn at 3:27 PM

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