KIOWA SATANTA & ADOEETTE FOUND GUILTY OF MURDER IN A TEXAS STATE COURT
Satanta (“White Bear”) & Adoeette (“Big Tree”) were both born in present-day Oklahoma, circa 1820 & 1845, respectively. Satanta, fluent in 4 Native languages & Spanish and known as “Orator of the Plains,” was a Kiowa negotiator at the Treaties of the Little Arkansas River (1865) & Medicine Lodge (1867). By May 1871, with food scarce, Satanta, Setank & Adoeette led the Warren Wagon Train Raid that killed 7 teamsters. General William Sherman had them arrested for murder & tried before a Texas state court–the 1st such trial of Native American chiefs (depriving them of prisoner of war status). Setank died trying to escape. Satanta & Adoeette, found guilty & sentenced to death, had their sentences commuted to life imprisonment on orders of President Grant. Both were paroled in 1873, but re-arrested in 1874 after the Red River Wars. Satanta was sent to prison in Huntsville, Alabama, where he committed suicide on October 11, 1878. Adoeette’s parole was reinstated and he became a Baptist minister and died in 1929.
Sources: “Satanta,” Kansaedia. Retrieved 12/16/2021, Satanta - Kansapedia - Kansas Historical Society (kshs.org) John D. May, “Satanta (ca. 1819-1874),” Oklahoma Historical Society. Retrieved 12/16/2021, Satanta | The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture (okhistory.org) Wikipedia Photo 1: William S. Soule (1836-1908), circa 1869-74. Photo of Satanta. Public Domain. Source: NARA research. American Indian Select List number 130 Photo 2: Author unknown, pre-1923. Big Tree. Public Domain.