Alexander Posey Biography

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(Critical Survey of Native American Literature)

Alexander Posey grew up in a large rural Oklahoma family, speaking Creek as his first language but educated in English at the Creek national public school and at Bacone Indian University. He was the first American Indian owner/editor of a daily newspaper; he published the weekly Indian Journal of Eufaula, Oklahoma. He was active in Creek politics and helped prepare the census of Creek Indians for the Dawes Act (General Allotment Act) allotments. Posey accepted the Dawes Act but sympathized with traditionalists who foresaw the damage that allotment would do to Creek life. His life was cut short in 1908 when he drowned near Eufaula. He was survived by his wife, Minnie Harris Posey (Lowena), and his children, Wynema Torrans and Yohola Irving.

In the “Fus Fixico” letters, Posey’s major contribution to American literature, fictional characters reflect on the pressing issues of allotment and Creek independence. Posey was reluctant to editorialize, so he created the personas of Hotgun, Fus Fixico, Chinubbie Harjo, Tookpafka Micco, Kono Harjo, and Wolf Warrior, who became voices of skepticism, tradition, advocacy, or resistance as Posey sought to educate his readers about the changes being imposed upon the Creek people. The letters transcend local concerns and exhibit an economy of style and superb rendering of dialect in their trenchant political commentary.