DescriptionEzekiel "Zeke" Proctor: 1892 Document Signed by the Famous Cherokee Indian Lawman. Proctor, born in Georgia in 1831 before the relocation of the Cherokee Nation, became in the 1860s one of the leaders of the secret Keetoowa Society-essentially a resistance movement which sought to preserve Cherokee independence, tribal customs, and traditions-and in 1870 he was named a delegate to the General Council of Indian Territory.
However, in 1872 Proctor was charged with a murder and was standing trial in a Cherokee court when two deputy marshals and a posse from Fort Smith arrived. A gun battle ensued, with nine men killed and others wounded before the posse retreated.
A compromise was reached whereby Proctor would be released if he agreed to become a "law abiding citizen." Proctor kept his word, and for several decades pursued a career in law enforcement. His knowledge of Indian Territory and possible hideouts made him invaluable to the Fort Smith court.
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