Foxwoods is tribal treasure

Nov 25, 2002 10:57 PM

   You will remember last week that I told you that I was going back East to host “The Seniors” World Championship of Limit Hold’em at Foxwoods. I sure want you to tune in next week and I will tell you all about it, but first I want to tell you about “The Wonder of it All.”

   Wonder Land: At every turn a special thrill, a magical moment.

   This is your place, to laugh, to dine, and to applaud headline entertainment year round. A place for you to enjoy the wonder of the newest slots and the hottest tables. A place like nowhere else on the planet. It’s all there, and it’s all yours. A wonder-filled world of experiences to be discovered.

   And this little Oklahoman, 1/64 Native American poker player was invited to host “The Seniors” World Championship of Limit Hold’em Poker.

   I am sure you will forgive me if I have trouble just getting my head back down to size.

   My great, great, grandfather was married to an Ossage Native American (Indian) princess, so by nature of birth I am a 1/64 Native American, and I am very proud of my Native American heritage, and I remember at my grandfathers knee that he told me some of the history of the Five Civilized Indian Tribes that were forced from their homeland back east to make room for the white settlers and that the Indian tribes were forced to take ”˜The Trail of Tears’ and that they ended up in reservations in the Oklahoma Territory that later became the great state of Oklahoma.

   My grandfather told me that the early Native Americans were given many, many promises by the great white father in Washington. One of these promises was, as long as the grass grows and the water flows this land shall be your land, but the great white father forgot to tell them that if gold, or oil, or if the Native Americans were to build a casino, that the white man would resend all promises. But the great white father made a mistke and wrote some of these promises down on paper and they were signed in blood, so that today the Native Americans are forcing the white man to keep some of the promises that were made to them, but let me back up just a minute.

   It is acknowledged that information in this column uses material from Getches, Wilkinson & Williams, Federal Indian Law, and from Josephy, The Indian Heritage of America and writing of Catherine J. Iorns Magallanes BA, LLB (Hons) Wellington: LLM Yale.

   In October of 1763 before there was a United States of America, The British King George III made a Royal Proclamation (Sometimes call The Indian Bill of Rights) designed to formalize the earlier promises and thereby mend the relationship with the Indians.

   The 1763 Royal Proclamation declared that the lands west of the 13 original colonies were reserved to the Indians and that settlers must remove themselves from these lands. Private purchase of Indian lands were prohibited. This Proclamation applied all the way from what is now Canada in the north, own to Florida in the south.

   Control over these Indian lands was one of the primary factors that led to the Revolutionary War and was debated in the drafting of the Declaration of Independence of 1776. For example the Continental Congress ordered that settler trespasses on Indian lands stop.

   Well, boy I really got up on my soap box, but I will step down to ground level. I do think that things have a way in this world of working themselves out.

   Which brings us to Foxwoods, which is owned by the Mashantucked Pequot Tribal Nation in Connecticut and is reported to be the richest casino operation in the world. If you would like to learn more about Native American (Indian) history come to my website at

   Now for the “Oklahoma Johnny” poker tip of the week.

   Kenny Rogers has a great song. “You’ve got to know when to hold’em and know when to fold’em, never count your money when sitting at the table, there will be plenty of time for counting when the dealing is done.” Great song, but I tell you always count your money when sitting at the table and if you are a winner, quit and go on home. They will deal again tomorrow.

   I am on my way down to the River Palms in Laughlin to join “The Seniors” poker director, Bob Thompson (member of “The Seniors” Poker Players Hall of Fame) who is holding a little poker tournament down there. I am going to try to work up a little “The Seniors” charity poker tournament with Bob. Hope to see you there.

   Until next time remember to Stay Lucky.

   Oklahoma Johnny is the author of the book “Gentleman Gambler and the founder of “The Senior’s” World Championship of Poker and “The Senior’s” Charities. He can be contacted by E-Mail at [email protected]. Or