Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Remembering Tushka Lusa Academy for Choctaw Freedmen


Tushka Lusa Academy, Talihini, Choctaw Nation
Courtesy of Eric Standridge

Tushka Lusa was an academy located in Talihina, Choctaw Nation. This was a school built exclusively for Choctaw Freedmen. The school was only a few miles east of the town of Talihina, and the remains of this school, like many other Freedmen schools, lies somewhere beneath the overgrowth and has been lost to time. The name comes from the Choctaw words that mean "black warrior", and it's one of the many forgotten landmarks of Indian Territory. This was the only institute established by the Choctaw Natoin forthe children of their former slaves.

Basic Facts of Tushka Lusa Academy

Location: Talihinia, Choctaw Nation
Superintendent:  Henry Nail (Choctaw Freedman)
Student Population: Approximatly 40 per year
Educational Offered:  Elementary Education (not secondary)
Staff:  Henry Nail, Dora E. Johnson, Julia Coleman

Partial Student List from 1894 (Girls):
Sarah Butler
Mary Butler
Julia Coleman
Jane Garrett
Emma Gross
Sarah Gross
Berda Howell
Mumbra Humbe
Sophia James
Dice Nail
Annie Nail
Amelia Nail
Amanda Peachlyn (sic) (Pitchlynn)
Eliza Riley
Martha Rodgers
Lucretia Shoals
Emma Thompson

Partial Student Listfrom1894 (Boys):
Miles Burras (sic) Burris
Caesar Eubanks
Ben Nail
lee Nail
Walter Pickens
Mariod Reed
John Richards
John Stanley
Walton Shoat (sic)
Solomon Sexton
Israel Tyms

By the mid 20th century, the school had ceased to exist. The school is now a forgotten landmark, but its history should not be forgotten.

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