Captain Jack (Keintpoos)

Modoc War leader. This photo was taken in a studio before the 1873 Modoc War broke out. The Modocs had at this time started an assimilation of sorts with settlers in the Lost River country of north - central California. The war was fought in what is today’s Lava Beds National Monument.

Presentation on “The Modoc War and Its Aftermath”

available on request.

Clyde "Chief" James,1925

Father of Cheewa James. Played basketball for what is today Southwest Missouri State University. James is pictured in his SWMSU “BEARS” jersey. He went on to play professional basketball for the Tulsa, OK, Diamond Oilers and other U.S. teams throughout the 1920s. Married to Luella Mueller, daughter of German immigrants to U.S.

General Edward R. S. Canby
Commander, Department of the Columbia, in command during the Modoc War. He was known to be sympathetic to the Indian plight while concurrently performing his role in keeping the peace. Canby was killed at the Good Friday Peace Conference (April 11, 1873) by Modocs.

Cheewa James, 1979

National Park Service Ranger - 1979-’80 in Lava Beds National Monument, CA, site of
the 1873 Modoc War.

Captain Jack's Family

Lizzie (younger wife of Capt. Jack), Princess Mary (sister of Capt. Jack), Rebecca (older wife of Capt. Jack), and Rosie (daughter of Capt. Jack). Princess Mary spoke English and often served as interpreter for Capt. Jack. Rosie, still a child, was the first person to be buried (1874) in the Modoc Cemetery near Miami, OK, which was once in Oklahoma Indian Territory.

Modoc Story

Bert Lawver, grandson of Ben and Alice,

and Cheewa James

Taken in 2008. Last name of James comes from Jim in Shacknasty Jim.

The Modoc War 

1872-1873

Ben Lawver (Chief Yellowhammer), wife Alice Lawver, and two of their eight children 

Lawver was the last historical Modoc chief at the Quapaw Agency, Oklahoma Indian Territory, where the Modocs were sent as POWs in 1873. In 1897 Ben married Alice Perdin, a Quaker missionary who spoke fluent Modoc. Nearly all Modocs became Quakers after exiled to

Oklahoma Indian Territory.


Pre - War Modocs

Shacknasty Jim (great - grandfather of Cheewa James),
Hooker Jim, Steamboat Frank, and rancher John Fairchild. Many Modocs, in their transition from the old way of life, wore the clothing of those around them. Fairchild was known to be a friend to the Modocs. Shacknasty Jim, among other Modocs, worked on Fairchild’s ranch.