The Lansing City Pulse has an interesting feature on a recently acquired and very rare tintype photogragh of Chief Okemos via eBay. Prior to this discovery there were only two known photographs and 4 known paintings of the Chief. According to the article not much is known about Chief Okemos and the aquistion of the tintype only adds to the mystery surrounding the man. It goes on to explore the plus and minuses of services such as eBay in placing price tags on historical items.
With millions of items being sold every day on eBay, you never know when a needle will be found in the online haystack. Imagine the excitement of local historian and collector Craig Whitford when last September he came across a listing for an ‚Äúoriginal ID‚ÄôED Indian Chief Tin Type.‚Äù An inscription in the case identified the photograph as ‚ÄúOkamus‚Äù and indicated the Indian chief was from Lansing.
Read: When I Was a Young Girl by Marion Turner Reasoner When I was a young girl Old Okemos, the chief of the Saginaw Chippewa, was a frequent visitor at our house. I remember that we looked upon him as a great chief and were much interested in hearing him talk of the terrible battles he had fought. We gazed upon the scars on his head and face with awe and decided he must have been one of the greatest warriors.
Michigan Historical Markers: Chief Okemos
Wikipedia: John Okemos (Chief Okemos)
Shiawassee County History: Chief John Okemos (includes photo of his grave stone)
Photo Credit: Chief Okemos from the Archives of Michigan