Re: Bass Reeves
I was made aware of this discussion by my colleague Bruce Allardice. Research shows that Bass Reeves served as a body servant for Colonel George R. Reeves of the 11th Texas Cavalry. Family history states that Reeves and his master fell out over a card game and Bass knocked his master out. After this altercation Bass moved into the Seminole and Creek Nations and lived with those Indians. Family history also says that Reeves fought with the Union soldiers of the Native Home Guard Regiments in the Indian Territory. Supposedly he was with the Creek Chief Opathayahola who fled into Kansas, and the chief told Reeves to stay and fight in the territory. Their were many irregular units in the Indian Territory, including the notorious Pin Indians, Cherokee guerilla fighters on the Union side, who haven't been researched very well yet. The First Regiment of the Indian Home Guards was made up primarily of Creek and Seminole Indians, most of the non-commissioned officers were African Americans who speak English and Indian languages. Many of these black soldiers went by Indian names. Sometimes black soldiers in the Indian Territory made up names. As slaves they only had a first name anyway. Slaves didn't formerly make full names for themselves until after the Civil War or during the war when they were being mustered for service, unless they already had their freedom. Bass Reeves during the war learned the lay of the land in the Indian Territory and mastered the use of the rifle and pistol. I hope this information helps.