published Saturday, November 9th, 2013

Cherokee Nation, Gilcrease Museum preserve documents

TULSA, Okla. — The Cherokee Nation and Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa are partnering to preserve handwritten documents dating to the 1800s that are important to the tribe.

The papers are called the "John Ross Papers" for former Cherokee Nation Chief John Ross, and the documents include information about the Trail of Tears and the re-establishment of the Cherokee Nation government in Tahlequah in 1839. Chief John Ross once owned the more than 2,000 handwritten pages.

Gilcrease Museum founder Thomas Gilcrease obtained the papers more than 70 years ago. The public has never viewed the documents.

Cherokee Nation officials on Friday presented Gilcrease Museum with a $20,000 check to preserve the papers through a conservation assessment and sleeve re-housing for each page.

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