Claremore Mound. Scene of a nineteenth century massacre of Osages by Cherokees in the last big battle between the two tribes. Claremont, chief of the Osages, is believed to be buried there. The play chronicles, through several decades of the lives of selected characters, the subsequent decline of the Cherokees.
*Claremore. Town in northeastern Oklahoma in whose Rogers County jail Bee Newcomb, a one-quarter Cherokee prostitute, betrays Art Osburn, also part Cherokee, who has been arrested for the murder of his older Indian wife. Viney Jones, a former country schoolteacher, has totally rejected her Cherokee heritage and moved to Quapaw, where her husband is mayor.
Whiteturkey farmhouse. Ramshackle home of Kate Whiteturkey, a rich Osage woman who owns three Stutz Bearcats; located in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, near the Kansas state line. Hutch Moree, Viney’s former companion, is living with Whiteturkey; he is a “kept man,” completely dominated by Kate—an ironic reversal of the Cherokees’ great victory at Claremore Mound.
Eagle Bluff. Edge of a sheer cliff overlooking the Illinois River and the town of Tahlequah, seat of the Cherokee Nation, and the fields and woods of the river valley below. Young Gar Breeden, a half-breed Cherokee, climbs the bluff after running away from his “guardeen” in Claremore. He is captured by members of a religious sect who believe themselves to be one of the Lost Tribes of Israel. They steal cattle, hogs, and grain from the Cherokee farms below. In their religion, they worship the sun, rain, and snow as much as they worship Jesus. In one of the most striking ironies in the play, menacing white fanatics have even appropriated the nature worship of the Cherokees.