When an impoverished tribe of American Indians struck it rich, predators swept in from far and wide, setting the stage for thieving, fraud…and mass-murder
The racism was not confined to Oklahomans. The US Congress enacted a law that required the indigenous Osage to produce a “certificate of competency” before picking up their royalties.
The biggest blunder made by Congress was to allow the headrights to be inherited by someone who was non-Osage if they had married an “incompetent” Osage. This was a law that opened the floodgates for unscrupulous fortune-seekers to marry Osage Indians purely to gain headrights to Osage land.
What followed was a rash of violent and mysterious deaths among the Osage tribe that became a reign of terror. The terror spanned a five-year period. Some Indians were gunned down on lonely roadsides, others were poisoned or died of unexplained diseases. Some simply disappeared and were never heard of again. Others were blown to bits in tremendous explosions. The list of unsolved Indian homicides expanded at an alarming rate and local lawmen made little progress investigating these murders.
Fearful Osages strung electric lights around their properties, which cast an eerie night-time glow across the Osage Hills, where the richest nation on Earth had now become the must vulnerable tribe on the planet…