John (Colonel) Duwa'li Bowles, Principal Chief (c.1756 - 1839) MP

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Nicknames: "Chief Duwali", "Chief Bold Hunter", "Diwali Bowls"
Birthdate:
Birthplace: Little Hiwasee, Cherokee Territory
Death: Died in Texas, USA
Cause of death: Killed at the Battle (massacre) of the Neches
Managed by: Marvin Caulk, (C)
Last Updated:

About John (Colonel) Duwa'li Bowles, Principal Chief

History of Tsalagiyi Nvdagi (Texas Cherokee)

by D. L. Utsidihi Hicks http://www.texascherokees.org/history1.html

Chief Diwali, "Bowl" also known in history as "Bowles," born around 1756 in the Cherokee town of Little Hiwasee, located in the western edge of what is now North Carolina, was interested in leaving tribal lands and moving to Spanish territory. His mother was Cherokee and his father is believed to be a Scottish Indian trader. Diwali was a follower of the great War Chief Dragging Canoe and had been a war chief among the Chicamaugas. When the Chicamauga towns were destroyed by the Americans in 1794, Diwali returned to his home in Little Hiwasee.

Around 1809, Chief Diwali and Chief Tsulawi, "Fox" with about seventy-five people migrated west. They crossed the Mississippi River and located near the old Spanish trading center of New Madrid. The people were given land and they proceeded to plant their crops and build homes. Other Cherokees joined them and the band grew in population. They were at peace with the Spanish.

In 1811, the largest earthquake in modern times hit near New Madrid. The disaster devastated Diwali and his people. They had arrived in a peaceful land and an act of Nature shook them. Their anidawehi, "religious leaders" told them Unequa, "Great Being or Spirit" wanted them to leave that place. They left their homes and fields behind and moved further west to join other Cherokees along the Saint Francis and White Rivers in the Arkansas Territory.

Unknown to Diwali and his people, the Americans had taken control of the land that they were now on in 1803 when they purchased the Louisiana Territory. This did not sit well with the red men when they learned of this. They knew it would not be long before the white man would come to this land.

The U. S. Government set up tribal land in Arkansas after the Louisiana Purchase. As more and more white settlers began to come into Arkansas Territory, the United States government demanded the Cherokees and other Indians move their towns and people north of the White River to new reservations. The reservations of small land would contain the Indians and give more land to the white settlers. Diwali held out as long as he could, but was intimidated by the whites to move his people. He finally left the Arkansas Territory, leaving behind his old friend Chief Tatsi, known as "Dutch" by the whites and his people. The two old warriors had combined forces to make war on the Osage Indians. So Much that it had upset American officials.

In 1819, Diwali moved his people south, across the Red River into Spanish Territory, to an area called Lost Prairie. This was the first known permanent settlement of a band of Cherokees in Texas. They lived there and planted and gathered two seasons of crops during the years of 1819-20. The Indians were forced to leave because of white settlers along the Red River. They moved to the forks of the Trinity River, which is that area of present day Dallas Texas. During their one year in that area, they received much trouble from the Taovaya Indians over hunting rights. The Cherokee were once again forced to leave their homes and crops to move further south into Spanish Territory. Diwali sought and was given the right by that government to settle fifty miles north of the old Stone Fort, located in Nacogdoches, Texas. The group arrived just before the planting season of 1822. Other Cherokee from the "Old Country" joined this group. A number of towns were set up in the East Texas area of what is now known as Cherokee, Smith, Rusk, Anderson, Van Zant, Greg, Upshire, Wood, Hopkins, and Rain Counties, to name a few.

Diwali and his people were very traditional and had not accepted the liberal ways of the tribe they left at home in the "Old Country." They practiced Clan Law and the ancient religious beliefs and customs of their ancestors.

All positions of leadership were elected offices in the Cherokee tribe and everyone, including women, voted on their leaders. Diwali was elected the Ugu, or "Head Chief" of the Cherokee in Texas. At times he served as Head Chief and War Chief combined, and because of his great leadership he was always re-elected as Ugu. All town leaders of this new government were then elected. The warriors in each town elected their war chiefs. They now were set up as a national government in Texas and their leader was called the Ugu, as was the national leader of the tribe.

Over the next few years, other displaced Indian tribes from the United States moved into the area to clear old Caddo Indian fields, to plant crops and build permanent homes. Diwali was appointed by the Spanish to be the administrative head of all Indians in East Texas. When the Mexicans won their independence from Spain in 1823, the Mexican Government affirmed the rights of the Cherokee and other Indian tribes to live on their land in Texas.

from http://www.paulridenour.com/bowles.htm

The 83 year-old Cherokee Chief Bowles (Chief Duwali or Bold Hunter) and about 800 Indians (around 600 being women, children, and the elderly) from various tribes including many Cherokees were killed in the Battle of the Neches on July 15-16, 1839, less than one month after Major Ridge, Elias Boudinot, and John Ridge were murdered.

Unlike Texas' first President Sam Houston, Mirabeau B. Lamar, the second president of the Republic of Texas, wanted the Indians out of East Texas and the result was a massacre near the Neches River. The historical marker erected in 1936 is 13.5 miles west of Tyler, Texas, off SH 64. Turn right on Van Zandt County Road VZ 4923 and follow the signs for 2.4 miles. Turn right just before the Tyler Fish Farm. If you are driving from Canton, Texas, it is about 21 miles east of Canton and 3 miles north of Redland, Texas.

Although President Mirabeau B. Lamar was responsible for the massacre, in 1856, Cherokee Chief Major Ridge's daughter Sarah Ridge was married to her second husband Charles Pix in the home of then Texas Governor Mirabeau B. Lamar.

-------------------- Notes for JOHN BOWLES, SR, CHIEF:

Starr, A33, pg 472: John Bowles was the son of a Scotch trader and a full blood Cherokee woman. His father was killed and robbed by two North Carolinans while on his way home from Charlestown with goods for his establishment. This murder was in 1768 when the son was only twelve years of age, but within the next two years the fair complexioned, auburn haired boy had killed both his father's slayers.

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The Texas Cherokees, p10-11; "In January [1810] Duwali, also known as Bowl and Bold Hunter, chief of the Town of Little Hiwassee (on the Hiwassee river, now western NC) and another headman named Saulowee (Tsu-lawi or Fox) jointly conducted a group of seventy five from their villages... Duwali's and Takatoka's people settled along the White and St Francis rivers in present day northeast Arkansas.

The Texas Cherokees, p99; "Bob Smith, with a pistol in his hand, ran toward him from further down the line... I called 'Captain, don't shoot him' but he fired, striking Bowles in the head and killing him instantly."

(John Hunter Reagan, eyewitness to Duwali's death, 7/16/1839)

The Texas Cherokees, p127; "Born about 1756 of a Scotish father and full blood Cherokee mother...

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Myths of the Cherokee, p146; Christmas day 1839, in a fight on Cherokee Creek, San Saba Co, ...captured were the wife & family of The Bowl.

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When Diwali saw that his people were going to be overun, he rode to the rear of his small army of warriors and there he waited for the advancing Texans.The 83-year old chief rode with sword and hat given him by his friend Sam Houston. (The sword is now in the Masonic Lodge in Tahlequah Oklahoma.) The old Chief was shot and knocked off his horse, and he rolled over to a sitting position. While he sat on the ground singing his war song, a Captain Smith rode up, stepped off his horse, and shot the old warrior in the head with a pistol. The Texans would not allow his body to be removed. The bones of the old Chief remained exposed and on the ground until the late 1800's.

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On the "Houston" Treaty of Feb 23, 1836

Chief Bowles places his X mark with the name of Colonel Bowl

his son, John, places his X mark with the name of John Bowl

More About JOHN BOWLES, SR, CHIEF:

Aka (Facts Pg): Duwa'li, John Bowles, The Bowl, Bold Hunter, Chief Bowles/Boles/ Bowl, Colonel Bowles

Blood: 1/2 Cherokee, 1/2 Scotish

Cause of Death: shot in the head by Cap Bob Smith

Chief 1: Bet. 1810 - 1813, Principal Chief, CN-Arkansas

Chief 2: Bet. 1827 - 1832, Principal Chief, CN-Texas

Emigration 1: January 1810, from North Carolina to Arkansas

Emigration 2: 1824, from Arkansas into Texas, across the Red river

Signer 1: 1791, Treaty of Holston

Signer 2: February 23, 1836, Houston Treaty (never ratified)

Starr's Notes: B669

--------------------

   * Ulutsa, married Chief John Bowles Sr.[Duwa'li, The Bowl, Bold Hunter, Colonel Bowles], son of a Scottish trader and a Cherokee woman, signed the treaty of Holston in 1791, died 16th July 1839 in Texas, and had issue.
         o Lightningbug Bowles
         o Dununesgi Bowles
         o Standing-Man Bowles
         o Quatini Bowles
         o Tsagina Bowles

http://uqconnect.net/~zzhsoszy/states/america/cherokee.html -------------------- The 83 year-old Cherokee Chief Bowles (Chief Duwali or Bold Hunter) and about 800 Indians (around 600 being women, children, and the elderly) from various tribes including many Cherokees were killed in the Battle of the Neches on July 15-16, 1839, less than one month after Major Ridge, Elias Boudinot, and John Ridge were murdered.

Unlike Texas' first President Sam Houston, Mirabeau B. Lamar, the second president of the Republic of Texas, wanted the Indians out of East Texas and the result was a massacre near the Neches River. The historical marker erected in 1936 is 13.5 miles west of Tyler, Texas, off SH 64. Turn right on Van Zandt County Road VZ 4923 and follow the signs for 2.4 miles. Turn right just before the Tyler Fish Farm. If you are driving from Canton, Texas, it is about 21 miles east of Canton and 3 miles north of Redland, Texas.

Although President Mirabeau B. Lamar was responsible for the massacre, in 1856, Cherokee Chief Major Ridge's daughter Sarah Ridge was married to her second husband Charles Pix in the home of then Texas Governor Mirabeau B. Lamar.

The links above and the historical marker mention that after this massacre, there was no more trouble with Cherokees in Texas. However, that is not true.