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Toby "Winema" Riddle (Modoc Indian) and Frank Riddle

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Toby "Winema" Riddle (Modoc Indian) and Frank Riddle

Posted: 9 Apr 2011 8:54PM GMT
Classification: Query
Surnames: Riddle
Hi Riddle cousins! I'm trying to see if anyone can determine if Tazwell F. Riddle is the same person as T. Frank Riddle the white settler from Kentucky who married Toby Riddle the famous Modoc Indian. I show that George Riddle (1787 MD)married Nancy Frans and one of their children is Tazwell F. (b 1830)

We remember stories from our grandmother that we are somehow related to Frank Riddle, but I'm not sure of the connection. On an old postcard from 1915 of the lava pits where the Modoc massacre occured the back inscription says "Aunt Toby" told my great aunt how it all happened. Also in Jeff Riddle's book about the Modoc war he says his dad's name is T. Frank Riddle (b. sept. 6th 1832) Can anyone verify that this is true?
See wikipedia article below.


Toby Riddle
Winema (Toby Riddle) standing between an Indian agent and her husband Frank (on her left) with other Modoc women in 1873Toby "Winema" Riddle (1848–1920) was a Modoc interpreter who helped with negotiations between the Native American Modoc tribe and the United States Army during the Modoc War (also called the Lava Beds War).

Riddle was a cousin of Kintpuash, the leader of the Modoc tribe at the time of the Modoc War, and was married to Frank Riddle, a white settler, who had emigrated from Kentucky to California during the California Gold Rush. Riddle served as a translator and shuttle diplomat between General Edward Canby and Kintpuash, during negotiations to end the wars. After she learned of a Modoc plot to assassinate Canby, Riddle warned the American general that the plot was set during a meeting at the Lava Beds, but he disregarded her advice, and was killed.

Frank, Toby and their son lived thereafter near the Klamath Reservation, where their progeny live today.[citation needed]

Several regional landmarks are named "Winema" after Riddle, including the Winema National Forest.

[edit] ReferencesBales, Rebecca Winema and the Modoc War: One Woman's Struggle for Peace Prologue Magazine National Archives 2005
by Doris Palmer Payne author of "Captain Jack, Modoc Renegade." Typifying courage and broad vision, the name of Wi-ne-ma, which has no meaning but has been interpreted most often as "Indian Princess," was given her after the Modoc War by Alfred B. Meacham. He was a member of the ill-fated peace commission whose life Riddle saved. Meacham took the Riddles and several Modoc warriors on an East Coast lecture circuit after the war; the name Winema was thought to be a crowd pleaser. "Winema has taken its place beside those of Sara Winnimucca and Sacajawea in the annals of the early west. The personal daring of these Indian Women and the roles they played as deiators between their people and the palefaces have lifted them above considerations of race into the ranks of the great women of all time. Wi-ne-ma was a full-blooded Modoc, born in the Indian village of Eulalona, located where Upper Klamath Lake pours its waters into Link River. While still a child she was called Wi-ne-ma by her tribesmen because of her bravery and skill in bringing a number of playmates to safety after their dugout canoe plunged into the cascades of the river. never, during all of the stirring events of her later life, did she fail to live up to her Indian name, although she became known as Tobey Riddle after her marriage to Yreka miner. When trouble developed between the Modoc Indians and the white settlers of the Klamath country, Toby, one of several Modocs who could speak English, frequently acted as interpreter. Through this role she exerted every possible influence to bring about a peaceful settlement. Even after war broke out in 1872 and bloody battles were being fought in the Lava Beds, forty miles south of Klamath Falls, her devotion to the best interests of both red men and white remained unswerving. Demonstrating her utter disregard for her personal safety was the risk she took in warning the government's peace commissioners that the Indians intended to massacre them. Had they heeded her advice, much bloodshed would have been averted and even though they ignored her, she succeeded in saving the life of one of them by attacking the brave who already had lodged several bullets in his body.

During the may years of her life following the Modoc War, Toby never ceased in her attempts to foster greater understanding between her people and the settlers. With increasing recognition of her self-sacrificing courage and her loyalty to the cause of peace, her fame grows brighter with the years.

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merck5 10 Apr 2011 2:54AM GMT 
billbacksskca... 12 Apr 2013 6:05PM GMT 
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