Biography of Capt. George W. Grayson

The subject of this sketch, George W. Grayson, was born in 1843, within four miles of Eufaula, Creek Nation. He is a son of the late James Grayson and Jennie Wynn, a half-breed Creek. The original name of Grayson was Grierson, having become corrupted in some unaccountable manner. The original Grierson was a Scotchman, reputed to have come from the city of Edinburgh, Scotland. He married a Creek woman of the Hillabee Town, who bore him several children, among whom was the grand-parent of the subject of our sketch. George W. was the first-born of his family, and his parents, being great admirers of literary attainments, persisted in keeping him and his brother “Sam” at such schools as the nation could afford, in preference to holding them at home, where, by assisting on the farm, they could have materially lightened the parental burden. In the course of time these young men became recognized among the most advanced pupils in the old Asberry Manual Labor School, close to Eufaula. George W. was finally singled out by the nation as most worthy of the superior advantages afforded by the schools in the States, and, thus favored at the expense of the nation, was placed at Arkansas College, Fayetteville, where he remained two years, until the outbreak of the Civil War. His father died about this time, and George W. joined, as private, the Second Regiment of Creek Volunteers, under Colonel Chilly McIntosh (Confederate service). At nineteen years of age he was captain of Company “K,” which he commanded until the close of the war. Captain Grayson took an active part in several skirmishes, the most notable being the engagement and the capture of the steamer “J. R. Williams,” at Pleasant Bluff, Arkansas River, and the sutlers’ train at Cabin Creek, each loaded with commissaries for the enemy at Fort Gibson. Soon after the war the subject of our sketch was called to the clerkship of the chiefs and councils of the nation, in which capacity he, with others, served for a time, when he married Miss Anna Stidham, and soon afterward left the old home for a farm which he had purchased, seven miles west of Eufaula. About this time he was elected national treasurer, which office he held two terms of four years each. He was next elected as one of the Creek representatives at the international council of the tribes, which position he relinquished for the secretary ship of the same, the appointment being conferred on him by the United States Commissioner of Indian Affairs, E. S. Parker. Captain Grayson has represented the nation as its delegate before various departments of the government and committees of Congress at Washington during some five or six sessions, and at one time successfully conducted, on the part of the nation, a contest for the chieftaincy, which the constitutional party claimed for J. M. Perryman, and which Ispar-he-char denied. Mr. Grayson has been a member of the House of Warriors for Coweta Town eight years, and has been recently re-elected for another term of four years. In each of these elections he was seated by the unanimous vote of his town. He belongs to what is generally known among the Creeks as the Tiger clan, from which, in former times, many of the leaders were chosen. Mr. Grayson’s wife, Georgiana, is the oldest living daughter of the late lamented G. W. Stidham. Her mother was the third wife of Judge Stidham, and was the daughter of Paddy Carr, whose name is familiar in the history of the Cherokees (see McKinney and Hall’s Indian Tribes, page 145). Mrs. Grayson’s parents were slave-owners, and she was brought up in affluence and ease, knowing nothing of hardships until the war swept away everything. Mrs. Grayson possesses a fair knowledge of books and music. She has traveled considerably in the West and South, and visited the city of Washington. She is a quiet, unostentatious woman, exceptionally lady-like and queenly in her deportment, and is loved and admired by all her acquaintances. Her daughter, Lena, her eldest-born, is married to W. H. Sanger and has a pleasant home in Eufaula, while she has with her Walter C., Washington, Eloise, Tsianina and Ethel, with the raising and education of whom she is at present most deeply concerned. Captain George W. Grayson is a tall, dignified, handsome man, of gentlemanly address. Though but forty-eight years of age, and possessor of an almost boyish complexion, his hair and beard are strangely white. He is fastidious in dress, intellectual in conversation, and polished in his manners.


Indian Territory,

O'Beirne, Harry F. and Edward S. The Indian Territory: Its Chiefs, Legislators, and Leading Men. St. Louis. 1898.

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