Officials discuss gathering of people
TULSA, Oklahoma — People gathered, a fire was lit and the call was made.
The Muscogee (Creek) Nation held their annual Council Oak ceremony Oct. 20 at the Creek Nation Council Oak Park located at 18th and Cheyenne.
According to ‘Mvskoke News’ archives, the ceremony has been an act of goodwill between MCN and the City of Tulsa since the late 1980s but to National Council Rep. James Jennings one major component was missing, the city itself.
Jennings said he has attended the ceremony every year except one since he was elected on the Council.
“Previously, the mayor of Tulsa would be present and read a proclamation and the last two years we haven’t had any representation from the city,” he said. “But that doesn’t keep our people from coming and gathering.”
Principal Chief James Floyd said the gathering of Muscogee (Creek) people for Council Oak is spiritually restoring for him.
Emcee Kenneth Johnson introduced the dignitaries and guests, pointing out the seats reserved for the Mekkos who had passed, Barney Harjochee and Jeff Fixico.
Council Oak is celebrated in honor of the Locv Pokv people who arrived in the area in 1836 from Alabama.
Miss MCN Nina Fox and Jr. Miss Louisa Harjo presented the history of the tree and the Locv Pokv people.
It was Fox’s first time attending the event though she had heard the story from her grandpa for years, while Harjo has been attending since she was young.
“It’s telling people that we are still here,” Fox said.
Recently, Tulsa Public Schools renamed Lee Elementary School to Council Oak Elementary School in honor of Mvskoke people’s history in the city.
“I think it’s going to have a positive impact on all the school systems,” Fox said.