Pushmataha Pushmataha

Pushmataha Pushmataha (1764 - 1824)

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Chief Pushmataha Pushmataha
Born in Noxubee River, Choctaw Nationmap
Husband of — married [date unknown] [location unknown]
Husband of — married in Tombigbee River, Okla Hannali, Six Towns Dist., Choc. Nation East,map
Descendants descendants
Died in Washington, District of Columbia, United Statesmap
Profile last modified | Created 8 Sep 2015
This page has been accessed 283 times.

Categories: Choctaw | Indian Nation, War of 1812 | Mississippi Territory, War of 1812 | United States Army Generals | Battle of Horseshoe Bend (1814) | Notables.

Pushmataha Pushmataha was a Native American and member of the Choctaw tribe.
Project: Choctaw Tribe
Chief Pushmataha Pushmataha served for Mississippi Territory in the War of 1812
Service started:
Service ended:
Pushmataha Pushmataha is Notable.



Pushmataha ( A-push-ma-ta-ha-hu-bi)


Genealogy Report

Alabama Congressional papers of November 1818 referred to a son.[21] Researchers believe the following are the names of four of his five children:

Hashitubbiee, also known as Johnson Pushmataha, died 1862-1865 in Blue County, Choctaw Nation, 3rd District

Betsy Moore, nothing found after deed

Martha Moore, nothing found after deed

James Madison, disappeared after the 1818 record in Alabama papers [2][3]

PUSHMATAHA2 (CHOCTAW1) was born Bet. 1755 - 1765, and died 24 Dec 1824 in Tennyson Hotel, Washington D.C..

He married (1) CHOCTAW WIFE. She was born Abt. 1755, and died Aft. 1832.

He married (2) IMMAYAHOKA Abt. 1795 in Tombigbee River, Okla Hannali, Six Towns Dist., Choc. Nation East,

daughter of JAMES COLE and SHOMAKA. She was born Bet. 1770 - 1775, and died Aft. 1835.


i.SON3 PUSHMATAHA, b. Abt. 1800; d. Bef. 1832.

Children of PUSHMATAHA and IMMAYAHOKA are:

ii.JOHNSON3 PUSHMATAHA, b. Abt. 1800; d. Unknown.

iii.BETSY MOORE, b. Abt. 1800; d. Unknown.

iv.MARTHA MOORE, b. Abt. 1800; d. Unknown.[4]

"push" Pushmataha

Born on 1764 to Choctaw and Coosha Choctaw. "push" married Cham Nay and had a child.

"push" married Immayahoka and had 3 children.

He passed away on 1825.

Family Members Parents

Choctaw 1720-Unknown

Coosha Choctaw 1720-Unknown


Cham Nay 1750-1831


Pis Tikio Nay 1780-1831

Spouse (2)

Immayahoka 1770-1835


Johnson Pushmataha 1800-Unknown

Betsy Moore 1800-Unknown

Martha Moore 1800-Unknown [5]

Chief Pushmataha's parentage:

"With a blow of his brazen hatchet, Vulcan cleft the head of Jupiter and Minerva leaped forth in panoply. This is a beautiful allegory, but it is not as grand in its conception as that of the birth of Pushmataha (Son of Thunder), who had neither father nor mother, but directed by the Great Spirit a thunderbolt struck a giant oak, and Pushmataha leaped forth, a young warrior, armed and painted, to go on the warpath. To this day many of the Choctaws adhere to this legend, and though he died in 1824 they still believe that he was only called away by the Great Spirit for consultation, and that when plans for the future prosperity of their country are fully matured he will rettun and again teach them the arts of peace, or, if necessary, lead them successfully against their enemies." [6]

"A little cloud was once seen in the northern sky. It came before a rushing wind, and covered the Choctaw country with darkness. Out of it flew an angry fire. It struck a large oak, and scattered its limbs and its trunk all along the ground, and from that spot sprung forth a warrior fully armed for war."

Chief Pushmataha was born about 1764 in the Lower Towns, or Okla Hannalli District of the Choctaw Nation near present day Macon, MS. Pushmataha became Chief of the Okla Hannalli not by traditional blood lineage to the previous Chief, but by merit.

His siblings proven by letters and testimony were two sisters, Happy Bird who married John Garland, and Nahotima.

The Wikipedia article on[7] states in part, " LeFlore was the first son of Rebecca Cravatt, a high-ranking Choctaw daughter of the chief Pushmataha, and Louis LeFleur, a French fur trader and explorer from French Canada who worked for Panton, Leslie & Company, based in Spanish Florida." This appears to be erroneous.

Reportedly, in a tense exchange Pushchair and Andrew Jackson exchanged barbs:

Gen. Jackson put on all his dignity and thus addressed the chief: "I wish you to understand that I am Andrew Jackson, and, by the Eternal, you shall sign that treaty as I have prepared it." The mighty Choctaw Chief was not disconcerted by this haughty address, and springing suddenly to his feet, and imitating the manner of his opponent, replied, "I know very well who you are, but I wish you to understand that I am Pushmataha, head chief of the Choctaws; and, by the Eternal, I will not sign that treaty."

Pushmataha resisted attempts of the United States to take away Choctaw lands and at the same time attempted to prepare his people for a rapidly changing world.

War of 1812 Service

Early in 1811, Tecumseh garnered support for his British-backed attempt to recover lands from the United States settlers. As chief for the Six Towns district, Pushmataha strongly resisted such a plan, pointing out that the Choctaw and their neighbors the Chickasaw had always lived in peace with European Americans, had learned valuable skills and technologies, and had received honest treatment and fair trade. The joint Choctaw-Chickasaw council voted against alliance with Tecumseh. When Tecumseh departed, Pushmataha accused him of tyranny over his own Shawnee tribe and other tribes. He warned Tecumseh that he would fight against those who fought the United States. With the outbreak of war, Pushmataha led the Choctaw in alliance with the United States. He argued against the Creek alliance with Britain after the massacre at Fort Mims. In mid-1813, Pushmataha went to St. Stephens, Alabama with an offer of alliance and recruitment of warriors. He was escorted to Mobile to speak with General Flournoy, then commanding the district. Flournoy initially declined Pushmataha's offer and offended the chief. Flournoy's staff quickly convinced the general to reverse his decision. A courier's carrying a message accepting Pushmataha's offer caught up with the chief at St. Stephens. Returning to Choctaw territory, Pushmataha raised a company of 500 warriors. He was commissioned (as either a Lieutenant Colonel or a Brigadier General) in the United States Army at St. Stephens. After observing that the officers and their wives would promenade along the Alabama River, Pushmataha invited his wife to St. Stephens and took part in this custom. Under General Claiborne, Pushmataha and 150 Choctaw warriors took part in an attack on Creek forces at the Battle of Holy Ground, also known as Kantachi or Econochaca, on 23 December 1813. With this victory, Choctaw began to volunteer in greater numbers from the other two districts of the tribe. By February 1814, Pushmataha led a larger band of Choctaws and joined General Andrew Jackson's force to sweep the Creek territories near Pensacola. Many Choctaw departed after the final defeat of the Creek at Horseshoe Bend. By the Battle of New Orleans, only a few Choctaw remained with the army. They were the only Native American tribe represented in the battle. Some sources say Pushmataha was among them, while others disagree. Another Choctaw division chief, Mushulatubbee, led about 50 of his warriors in this battle. Pushmataha was regarded as a strict war leader, marshaling his warriors with discipline. U.S. Army officers impressed with his leadership skills called him "The Indian General". [8]

When the Creek Indian War ignited in September 1813 and General Jackson called for volunteers, Pushmataha, wearing the uniform of an American general, trained and led 500 Choctaws into battle. They served with distinction at the battles at Holy Ground and Horseshoe Bend in Alabama. He also served in the battle of New Orleans and in the Seminole wars with Jackson, who later eulogized Pushmataha as "the greatest and bravest Indian" he had ever known. [9]

Wikipedia Abstract

Pushmataha (c. 1760s – December 24, 1824; also spelled Pooshawattaha, Pooshamallaha, or Poosha Matthaw), the "Indian General", was one of the three regional chiefs of the major divisions of the Choctaw in the 19th century. Many historians considered him the "greatest of all Choctaw chiefs".[1] Pushmataha was highly regarded among Native Americans, Europeans, and white Americans, for his skill and cunning in both war and diplomacy.

Rejecting the offers of alliance and reconquest proffered by Tecumseh, Pushmataha led the Choctaw to fight on the side of the United States in the War of 1812. He negotiated several treaties with the United States.

In 1824, he traveled to Washington to petition the Federal government against further cessions of Choctaw land; he met with John C. Calhoun and Marquis de Lafayette, and his portrait was painted by Charles Bird King. He died in the capital city and was buried with full military honors in the Congressional Cemetery in Washington, D.C.

Early life

Pushmataha's early life is poorly documented. His parents are unknown, possibly killed in a raid by a neighboring tribe. Pushmataha never spoke of his ancestors; a legend of his origin was told:

"A little cloud was once seen in the northern sky. It came before a rushing wind, and covered the Choctaw country with darkness. Out of it flew an angry fire. It struck a large oak, and scattered its limbs and its trunk all along the ground, and from that spot sprung forth a warrior fully armed for war."

[3] Most historians agree that he was born in 1764 in the normal manner near the future site of Macon, Mississippi.[5]

When he was 13, Pushmataha fought in a war against the Creek people.[6] Some sources report that he was given the early warrior-name of "Eagle". Better attested is his participation in wars with the Osage and Caddo tribes west of the Mississippi River between 1784 and 1789,[1][7] He served as a warrior in other conflicts into the first decade of the 1800s, by then his reputation as a warrior was made. These conflicts were due to depletion of the traditional deer-hunting grounds of the Choctaw around their holy site of Nanih Waiya. Population had increased in the area, and competition among tribes over the fur trade with Europeans exacerbated violent conflict. The Choctaw raided traditional hunting grounds of other tribes for deer.[8] Pushmataha's raids extended into the territories that would become the states of Arkansas and Oklahoma. His experience and knowledge of the lands would prove invaluable for later negotiations with the US government for those same lands"

Memorial Notes:

Death and burial

In December 1824, Pushmataha acquired a viral respiratory infection, then called the croup. He became seriously ill and was visited by Andrew Jackson. On his deathbed, Pushmataha reflected that the national capital was a good place to die. He requested full military honors for his funeral, and gave specific instructions as to his effects. His last recorded words were these:

"I am about to die, but you will return to our country. As you go along the paths, you will see the flowers, and hear the birds sing; but Pushmataha will see and hear them no more. When you reach home they will ask you, 'Where is Pushmataha?' And you will say to them, 'He is no more.' They will hear your words as they do the fall of the great oak in the stillness of the midnight woods."[3]

Grave of Pushmataha in Congressional Cemetery (Washington, DC, US) [10] Pushmataha died on December 24, 1824. As requested, he was buried with full military honors as a Brigadier General of the U.S. Army, in the Congressional Cemetery in Washington. He is one of two Native American chiefs interred there.

His epitaph, inscribed in upper case letters, reads:

Push-ma-ta-ha, a Choctaw chief, lies here. This monument to his memory is erected by his brother chiefs who were associated with him in a delegation from their nation in the year 1824 to the general government of the United States.

Push-ma-ta-ha was a warrior of great distinction he was wise in council — eloquent in an extraordinary degree, and on all occasions & under all circumstances the white man's friend.

He died in Washington on the 24th of December 1824 of the croup in the 60th year of his age. Among his last words were the following "When I am gone let the big guns be fired over me."

The National Intelligencer Article

reported on December 28, 1824 on his death:

At Tennison's Hotel, on Friday last, the 24th instant, Pooshamataha, a Chief of the Choctaw Nation of Indians, distinguished for his bold elocution and his attachment to the United States.

At the commencement of the late war on our Southern border, he took an early and decided stand in favor of the weak and isolated settlements on Tombigby, and he continued to fight with and for them whilst they had an enemy in the field.

His bones will rest a distance from his home, but in the bosom of the people he delighted to love. May a good hunting ground await his generous spirit in another and a better world.

Military honors were paid to his remains by the Marine Corps of the United States, and by several uniformed companies of the militia. [11]

The Hampshire Gazette Article

(MA), Jan. 5, 1825, reported:

At Washington city, PUSHA-A-MA-TA-HA, principal chief of a district of the Choctaw nation of Indians. This chief was remarkable for his personal courage and skill in war, having been engaged in 24 battles, several of which were fought under the command of Gen. Jackson. [12]

Additional Family Notes

Many historians use a quote attributed to Gideon Lincecum, who said that Pushmataha was an orphan with no family; but, both George Strother Gaines and Henry Sales Halbert mention his family. In Publications of the Mississippi Historical Society, Vol 6, Halbert mentions a sister named Nahomtima, the mother of Tappenahoma and Oka Lah Homma (from his notes). Gaines mentions the nephew who succeeded Pushmataha, but does not give a name.[18] Halbert received his information from first and secondhand accounts, and Gaines from personal knowledge. Although Lincecum lived among the Choctaw, he writes that he only met the Chief on three or four occasions, while living near the Chief Mosholatubbee. Most of what Gideon Lincecum wrote came from information provided by others.

The supplement to the Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek mentions the widows of Pushmataha. Only one widow has been documented as having received the land guaranteed to them by the treaty. When she and her three children later sold the land, her name was recorded in three different spellings in the deed: as Immahoka, Lunnabaka/Lunnabaga, and Jamesaichikkako. [19]

Some individuals claim to be descendants of the chief, but the only record of the number of his children is by Charles Lanman,[20] who wrote there were five. Lanman likely based his statement on the notes of Thompson Mckinney,[citation needed] who had resided among the Choctaw for many years. Mckinney had written in an 1830 letter to James L. McDonald, a Choctaw lawyer in Hinds County, Mississippi, about his interest in writing about Pushmataha.

Alabama Congressional papers of November 1818 referred to a son.[21] Researchers believe the following are the names of four of his five children:

Hashitubbiee, also known as Johnson Pushmataha, died 1862-1865 in Blue County, Choctaw Nation, 3rd District

Betsy Moore, nothing found after deed

Martha Moore, nothing found after deed

James Madison, disappeared after the 1818 record in Alabama papers. [13]

"Pushmataha had a total of five children, and though he could not speak a word of English, he took pains to have his children as well educated as his circumstances would allow." [14]



By Ruth Tenison West*

The Great Medal Chief, Pushmataha, dramatically demonstrated his knowledge of the land west of the Mississippi River, in his famous debate with General Andrew Jackson at the treaty ground near Doak's Stand, Mississippi, a tavern, four miles north of Pearl River on the Natchez Trace, in the Choctaw Nation.' He accused General Jackson of misrepreseuting the country the U. S. Government wanted to "swap for a little slip of land at the lower part of the present Choctaw Nation." (5,500,000 acres, subsequently divided into nine counties.) Jackson demanded that "General Push"2 prove his accusations. Pushmataha described the western country and added he had offered to swap to me an undefined portion of Mexicsn territory. He offers to run the line up the Canadian River to its source and thence due south to Red River. Now I know that a line running due south from the source of the Canadian would never touch any portion 02 Red River, but would go into the Mexi- can possessions beyond the limits even of my geographic knowledge. "

Pushmataha had extensively traveled west of the Mississippi river on buffalo hunts, exploring and battling the Spanish and other Indian Nations during his early years. [15]


  1. [(https://www.choctawnation.com/chief/1830-1857-pushmataha-district)]
  2. [(Alabama State papers)]
  3. [(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pushmataha)]
  4. http://jenniferhsrn2.homestead.com/pushmataha.html
  5. [(http://www.ancestry.com/genealogy/records/%22push%22-pushmataha_204798485)]
  6. [(https://archive.org/stream/publicationsmis01unkngoog#page/n422/mode/2up The Life of Apushitamaha by Dr. Gideon Lincecum], page 415 Publications of the Mississippi Historical Society by Riley, Franklin L. (Franklin Lafayette), 1868-1929; Mississippi Historical Society Published 1898)]
  7. [( Greenwoood LaFlore)]
  8. [(http://nativeamerican.lostsoulsgenealogy.com/biographies/pushmataha.htm)]
  9. [(http://www.anb.org/articles/20/20-00828.html)]
  10. [(https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=845)]
  11. [(The National Intelligencer reported on December 28, 1824)]
  12. [(The Hampshire Gazette (MA), Jan. 5, 1825,)]
  13. [(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pushmataha)]
  14. [(http://www.natchezbelle.org/ahgp-ms/push.htm)]
  15. [( http://digital.library.okstate.edu/Chronicles/v037/v037p162.pdf)]

* American State Papers: Indian Affairs, vols. 1 and 2 (1932-1934);

  • J. F. H. Claiborne, Life and Times of General Sam Dale (1860);
  • H. S. Halbert and T. H. Ball, The Creek War of 1813 and 1814 (1895);
  • Gideon Lincecum, "Life of Apushimataha," Mississippi Historical Society Publications 9 (1906): 115;
  • Samuel G. Drake, History of the Indians of North America (1835);
  • Thomas L. McKenney and James Hall, The Indian Tribes of North America (1933);
  • Frederick W. Hodge, ed., Handbook of American Indians North of Mexico (1959);
  • H. B. Cushman, History of the Choctaw, Chickasaw, and Natchez Indians (1899).

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Images: 2
Pushmataha, by Charles Bird King,
 Pushmataha, by Charles Bird King,

Pushmataha: Choctaw Warrior, Diplomat, and Chief
Pushmataha: Choctaw Warrior, Diplomat, and Chief

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On 20 Apr 2018 at 15:00 GMT Michael Dolese wrote:

Pushmataha-3 and Pushmataha-2 appear to represent the same person because: Same birth and death dates, obviously the same person

Pushmataha is 20 degrees from George Barnes, 28 degrees from Amy Utting and 21 degrees from Victoria of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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