And so it was that the people of Lochapoka, a daughter of Tallasi (where the name Tulsa is believed to be derived), came to the Indian Territory to begin a new life. With the oak defining a southeastern corner, the people of Lochapoka proceeded to lay out a square for their new home. The oak that provided the Lochapoka their first council site has servived to this day. Now much older and even more stately, it stands between Seventeenth and Eighteenth Streets and Cheyenne and Denver Avenues in Tulsa, Oklahoma
Council Oak Mediation is named after the Creek Council Oak Tree, a historic landmark located just a few blocks south of our offices. The Council Oak Tree was chosen by the Lochapoka clan of the Creek Indians as the place to begin a new life after the U.S. Government forced the clan to relocate from Alabama in 1834. More than 160 people died enroute to Okalahoma Territory out of the original group of 630 who began the involuntary migration.
"When the Upper Creeks started on their long trail from Alabama to the new Indian Territory, a pot of ashes and a burning brand were taken from the council fires at Tulwa. Each day along the trail, a brand would be taken from the previous night's fire to light the fire at the close of the day's march. In this manner, from day to day throughout the entire trip, the camp fires were lighted along the route from the embers of the last camping place. Upon their arrival in the Creek Nation, they selected a site on the crest of a hill overlooking the Arkansas River on which grew a mighty oak tree. The site was high enough that they could view the plains to the south and each. With much ceremony they scattered the ashes over the ground surrounding the tree. This meant to them that their western council fire was actually burning from the flames of their Alabama homeland". (Tulsa's Magic Roots by Nina Lane Dunn (c) 1979; pg 58)
© 2002 The Oklahoma State Senate Historical Preservation Fund, Inc. and Mike Larsen
The Council Oak Tree