American History Chilocco Bus Tour,
March 10, 2005
The bus tour and program afterward in the highschool auditorium went
off very well. The auditorium was fairly filled and the audience stayed
connected and attentive as Heather from the Historical Preservation Office
at Oklahoma City spoke. She is a tiny woman but held everyone with a
powerful presence. It was refreshing to see her strength and commitment to
landmarks over Oklahoma. She brought out the economic value of having jobs
made available through restoration of buildings and thus saving the history
of our state. There are ways for doing this and these were pointed out,
too. Binding together of communities in a united effort through fund
raising projects gives citizens a purpose and will to control their own
environment through working for their area's prosperity. She advised that
waiting on grants was not always the right thing to do because this can be a
long drawn out process.
These are notes of my
part of the program:
Greetings Fellow Chiloccoans
and Lovers of History
I'm Donna Jones Flood, class of '55
First I'd like you to meet Bret Carter. Bret has a great dedication to the
work of saving history. He has had the leadership skills to bring us
together here today. Bret respects the efforts of our ancestors and works
hard to save the memory of their work. Can we have a round of applause for
I would like to introduce my cousin Charmaine Billy, who is the vice
President of the alumni chapter here.
Garland Kent, please stand up. Garland is the President. He was with the
Class of '58.
Alice Sheeter, are you here? Please stand up? Alice is the treasurer of
this chapter's alumnae.
We want to say a special thank you to the five tribes who own the Chilocco
campus and who have graciously given us their attention. The Kaws: The
Tonkawas' The Pawnee's, Ponca's and Otoes.
I really don't know what I am doing up here. I've been a house wife for
almost fifty years and I know so many of you have done so much more. All I
ever wanted was to have a family.
I worked at night studying my
art, showing and exhibiting all around Dallas just so I could see the inside
of some of their places. Then all at once I was exhibiting at the Kennedy
Performing Arts Center. That didn't mean a thing either. It was just to
entertain the folks up on the hill with Indian art. I'm sure they didn't
have a clue as to why I showed a painting of a half Cherokee and Non-Indian
girl. She was as blond as my grandkids but she was a horse women extra
ordinaire. She died of cancer and I just wanted to remember her. As the
Ponca's say, “She was “Sas-Su-Way” Half blood.
Then I was all at once so angry that all our hard work at our school,
Chilocco, was just lost. No one knew anything about how we hung in there,
struggled so hard to get through our own issues. However, it wasn't just
Chilocco, it was the whole family background. My kids had no idea the
hardships our ancestors endured. I couldn't talk to them and tell them. They
were too busy with soccer, school activities, homework.....dating, etc..and
then they were married with even more responsibilities. I couldn't talk to
them and tell them sooooooo I wrote a book, and I guess that is why I'm up
here. “How To Keep Up With The Joneses” are stories about my ancestors who
struggled even harder than we did to fit into the world around them.
There is work to be done and it isn't just about Chilocco. It is about so
many other things around us. So let's begin with the slides Bret has worked
so hard to bring to us on this power point presentation.
2. (large print) Condensed notes, Chilocco (pronounced Shuh-lock-o)
Yesterday and Today, March 10, 2005
1910-Slide number 1.
1. You might ask why I'm
showing this picture? This woman, Anna Schoenholz, obviously isn't Indian so
how is she involved in Chilocco. Anna came to Ellis Island from Germany,
circa 1910. George Schoenholz, also an immigrant, sent for her from Germany.
He went to New York and married her there before he brought her home to
these prairie lands outside of Foraker and Grainola. She was a widow with
two children, Emma and Bill. These children, her grandchildren are my half
brothers, Arnold and Paul Jones, children of my father's first marriage.
The 1910's were a decade of great change for America. It was the decade when
the United States was first considered a world leader. World War 1-the first
'war to end all wars' raged. 1910 was the decade America came to age. It was
the decade which began with America's efforts to reform itself and ended
with its efforts to reform the world.
1910- Elizabeth Little Cook,
Pensoneau, Hernandez my grandmother is the first short story in my book,
“How To Keep Up With The Joneses.”. She is full Ponca but dressed here in
the costume of the day, 1910. It was the last year of the “Gibson Girl
Look.” Elizabeth for all her academic life was schooled in institutions.
First in the government school out of White Eagle and then at Chilocco. She
worked at Chilocco as a housemother over 200 boys in Home Two. She was a
court clerk here at Newkirk taking notes in the court room with short hand.
She worked in the A.W. Comstock, Attorney at Law, Law office as a secretary
and a interpretor. This time period enjoyed, BALL ROOM DANCING, GEORGE
GERSHWIN, THEATERS, COLE PORTER and songs like, “ HINKY DINK PARLAY
VOUS.” The first MODEL T for 345 dollars rolled off new assembly lines.
The Titanic sunk in 1912.
All of us remember how we became skilled ballroom dancers at Chilocco. We
danced every night at the Flaming Arrow. In later years I was dancing at a
party. Someone said, “Why Donna, I thought you lived in such a “straight
laced family.” They obviously thought I had learned to dance at the public
dance houses. I just let it go, how could I explain about Chilocco and our
1920-My father, Lee Otis Jones, on the right, his sister, Gertrude Jones in
the middle, and his brother, Dennis Homer Flynn Jones on the left. This
decade is often characterized by a period of American optimism and
prosperity. The nation became urban and commercial. It is seen by historians
as a decade of serious cultural conflict.
Hitler was coming into place in 1921. He capitalized on our economic
depression in 1929. Because we as a nation had become frivolous with our
good times in and around the prohibition era we were weakened so that he did
come to power. The nation had been practicing isolationism.
Like the concentration camps saved today as museums it is my plea to the
people of this great nation that Chilocco should be saved for the same
reason. OF course, we were NOT imprisoned in a concentration camp, quite
the opposite. Most of us as alumnae agree it was a wonderful time.
1. LOVING TEACHERS WHO WERE DEDICATED TO THEIR MISSION
2. CLEAN HOUSING (no matter that we did the cleaning).
3. GOOD FOOD (until we got tired of it)
4. FELLOWSHIP WITH TRIBES FROM ALL OVER THE NATION (and some of us married.)
5. SOCIAL ACTIVITIES WITH GRACEFULNESS WE COULD HAVE HAD NOWHERE ELSE
6. THE SPORT OF OUR CHOICE (and this wasn't night hawking)
We are proud that a difficult
problem was addressed and implemented by the fathers of our country. We as
American Indians were educated and learned how to survive in the White man's
world for that I am thankful. Of course, we have all had our own trials and
struggles but because we could read and write we all have been able to
accomplish. Do we want institutions for our children? No, we do not.
However, this is the freedom we enjoy to make that choice.
Make mention of my book. Buy
my book, read about Lizzie, my grandmother. Open floor to questions &
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