My Ancestor, COL William H. Garrett, accepted the appointment as the US Agent to the Creek Nation in 1853. He served as the US Agent to the Creeks with the rank of COL until 1861. He made multiple trips to Washington, D.C. in the 1850's including leading delegations of the Creeks to the White House. After a US Army delegation failed to convince the Seminoles to leave Florida, Garrett lead a delegation of Creek and Seminole leaders to Florida that was successful in convincing them to relocate a significant portion of the tribe to the Indian Territory.
In 1861 COL Garrett resigned from US service & accepted the appointment to COL and Indian Agent to the Creek Nation from the CSA. He helped BG Albert Pike negotiate the treaty between the Creeks and the CSA and was present during the debate amongst the Creek legislators prior to ratification. COL Garrett took provisional command of the 1st Creek Mounted Rifles until COL McIntosh, a Creek Micco or Chief, could be confirmed by the CSA. His brother, John H. Garrett, served in the 1st Creek MTD Rifles and was credited with destroying the military stores at North Fork Town, Creek Nation, I.T., before advancing Union Forces could capture them.
COL Garrett apparently attempted to reach Richmond, VA during the winter of 1862-1863 in search of a combat command by way of his family home in Centre, Cherokee County, AL. He was accompanied by his pregnant wife and three year old son. En route or in Centre, AL, a daughter was born and named for the wife of his close friend, Creek Agency interpreter during COL Garrett's tenure, CPT in the 1st Creek MTD Rifles and later Chief Justice of the Creek Nation, George Washington Stidham. Judge Stidham had accompanied COL Garrett in 1855-56 to the US Capitol and had been introduced to his 2nd wife, Ms. Elizabeth Thornsberry of VA by COL Garrett and she was later employed as a Creek Agency teacher by Garrett. Thus Elizabeth "Lizzie" Garrett was born in the winter of 1862-63 as COL Garrett rode East seeking a combat command.
The infant Lizzie was left behind in Centre. Published reports indicate that in the late spring and/or early summer, COL Garrett's position was filled by the Commissioner of Indian Affairs. Reference is made to his untimely death. He was replaced by Major Israel Vore, Quartermaster for BG D. Cooper, also a CSA Indian Agent and former US Indian Agent. Vore had also been an employee of COL Garrett and the Creek Indian Agency. Published reports also indicate that Garrett had died of pneumonia or consumption, but none of these were official Army or CSA reports. His wife and son, who had accompanied him on to Richmond, were also reported to have died from the same lung disease. This is also what the family oral tradition states. Media reports for the Winter of 1862-1863 and Summer 1863 indicate a significant outbreak of "consumption" or TB in and around Richmond.
CPT John Garrett took leave and with the COL's slaves from the IT, went to Centre, AL and took Lizzie to the CSA Creek across the Red River in Texas where Judge Stidham and his wife were at the time. Apparently, this was on the land that BG Pike had obtained for the refugee Creek, Cherokee, and Choctaws. CPT's Stidham and Garrett returned to the war and Lizzie was raised by Lizzie Stidham in Texas until the end of war.
After the war, John H. Garrett returned to Centre, AL. Lizzie was raised by Judge and Mrs. Stidham as Lizzie Garrett. She was adopted by the Creek Nation at the National Council in 1880 and the adoption was recognized by the Dawes Commission following the taking of testimony in 1905. Lizzie Garrett, later Gibson, became a well known translator for the Hanging Judge, Isaac Parker, at the US District Court for the Western District of Arkansas and the Indian Territory. She was also a well known healer and was reputed to have saved the life of Chitto Harjo, the leader of the Creek traditionalists who opposed the enrollment process under the Dawes Commission.
I am seeking information about the COL Garrett's exact movements from the fall of 1862 to his death, his death, the death of his wife and son, the location(s) of their remains, whether or not he ever obtained a new command, and any specific information on the birth of Elizabeth Garrett. Thanks. Greg James