Allotment #40: Thomas Richardville

Collections of the National Anthropological Archives


Thomas Francis Richardville

Born: 23 April 1830 Died: 16 January 1911

Waapimaankwa was the great-grandson of Akima Pinšiwa (Chief J. B. Richardville), the son of a man known as Pimicinwa or Crescent Richardville.  Thomas was orphaned at a young age and grew up in Indiana.  Though he was exempted from removal and did not make the trip to Kansas Territory in 1846, he rejoined his Myaamia community in the Spring of 1860.  Chief Richardville had eight children by three wives.  The oldest children were Francis, Rose Ann, Mary Louisa and Mary Jane, all of whom came from his first marriage to Angeline Goodboo. In 1866, he married Ruth Ozandiah and had a son Henry Moses. He later married Martonah (Mary Lindsey) and had three children: Catherine, Charles, and Hannah.  Educated as a lawyer at Notre Dame, he became a valuable intermediary between the Miami Nation and the United States Government.  Though he was influential in leadership for many years prior, he first became Chief in 1888, after the relocation to Indian Territory.  Chief Richardville’s leadership was integral to the decision to remain a separate entity upon relocation, rather than consolidating membership with the Peoria Tribe as allowed under the 1867 Treaty.