Biography of Colonel Johnson Harris

Johnson Harris, was born April 19, 1856, the youngest son of William Harris, a white man, and Susan Collins, daughter of Parker Collins, a half Cherokee. Johnson attended neighborhood school until 1876, when he entered the male seminary, Tahlequah, and there remained for one year, when he commenced teaching in the public schools. In 1881 he was elected member of the senate to represent the Canadian district, and filled the same office three different terms. In 1887 and 1889 he was elected as national delegate to Washington. After the inauguration of Chief Mayes, Colonel Johnson Harris was appointed executive secretary, and held that position until 1891, when he was elected national treasurer in place of Henry Chambers. In 1877 he married Miss Nannie Fields, daughter of Richard Fields, by whom he has three children, a girl and two boys. Colonel Harris again married, this time to Miss Mamie Adair, daughter of William Penn Adair, March 4, 1891. Mrs. Harris is a lady of many accomplishments, among them that of art, her attainments in that field being quite considerable. She graduated at the Kirkwood Seminary, in Missouri. On the death of Joel Mayes, principal chief, December 1891, Colonel Harris was put in nomination as his successor, and was elected, by a large majority, by the council then in session, as chief executive of the Cherokees. Few men have ever attained to such a high position so early in life. Mr. Harris having served the people only ten or eleven years. Governor Harris resides in Tahlequah. He is the owner of a considerable herd of cattle and a fine farm. Personally, he is a handsome, intellectual looking man, six feet high and weighing 210 pounds. His education is far above the average, being well read on most subjects and a good conversationalist. Few men can boast of such a wide spread popularity as Governor Harris.


Indian Territory,

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

Discover more from Access Genealogy

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading

Scroll to Top