Osage Nation

Some weep as turbines rise

For three generations, Ford Drummond’s family has been ranching in the Osage. On Monday, as he often does, Drummond headed west out of Pawhuska on U.S. 60 to that magical spot west of Timber Hill, at the crest of a hill dominated by a rural water tower, a place from which one can behold tens […]


Osage Congress to move wind fight into tribal court

Osage Congress to move wind fight into tribal court

As part of an emergency session, the Fourth Osage Congress passed legislation Monday that could potentially move the tribe’s fight against wind farm companies into yet another courthouse. With most of its wording pulled directly from the Osage Constitution, ONCA 15-09 extends the tribe’s civil jurisdiction to all activities and people within the tribe’s territory, […]


United States seeks order to stop wind farm construction

The United States Department of Justice filed suit today in U.S. District Court in Tulsa accusing the companies building the wind farm west of of Pawhuska of illegally mining minerals owned by the Osage Nation. In the complaint, U.S. Attorney Danny Williams and the U.S. Department of Interior are asking that the construction activities be […]


Skiatook mayor resigns

Randy Sien, the mayor of Skiatook, has resigned in the wake of a bout of bad health. In an announcement he made on Facebook, Sien said he will be replaced Nov. 14 at midnight by City Councilor David Sutherland. A few weeks ago, Sien was hospitalized after receiving CPR and said his cholesterol was out […]


5 man board claims tribe lacks power to prosecute

Motions to dismiss criminal charges against four former members of the Pawhuska Indian Village were denied Wednesday, but the door remains open for a potential appeal. Attorneys for Joe Don Mashunkashey, Kenneth “K.C.” Bills, Frank Redcorn and Theodore Brunt argued that the Pawhuska Indian Village, along with the villages in Grayhorse and Hominy, are separate […]


BIA report is scathing

The Bureau of Indian Affairs Osage Agency, where oil leases are tracked on a linen map and where other antiquated practices have run rampant, is in need of “sweeping changes,” according to a scathing evaluation issued last week by the Department of Interior’s Inspector General. Poor management at the agency has led to not only […]


Judge mum on wind ruling

Judge mum on wind ruling

A judge said he has made up his mind how he is going to rule on a wind development’s request to reverse a decision of the Osage County Board of Adjustment, but he gave little hint of what that decision would be at a hearing Thursday. “I’m going to go back home and write out […]


BIA orders halt to wind

BIA orders halt to wind

The Bureau of Indian Affairs has told Enel Green Power to stop quarrying rocks from the prairie west of Pawhuska or face potential legal action by the Office of the Field Solicitor. The letter, from BIA Osage Agency Superintendent Robin Phillips to Francesco Venturini, the president of Enel Green Power North America in Andover, Mass., […]


BIA wants lawsuit tossed

Multiple motions to dismiss a pending federal lawsuit regarding the Osage Mineral Estate are now on file with the Northern District of Oklahoma. In pleadings submitted Monday and Tuesday, attorneys for more than a dozen oil and gas entities, including Osage Energy Resources; Devon Energy, Clear Mountain Production; Kaiser-Francis Anadarko; Chaparral Energy, and Marco Oil […]


One killed, his cousin hurt, in wreck that has a community grieving

A Pawhuska high school student was killed and his cousin injured Saturday evening on County Road 4301, the road that runs west toward Foraker through the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve. The Oklahoma Highway Patrol identified neither juvenile but friends and family said the accident at 5:45 p.m. claimed the life of Mikey Lynn and injured his […]


BIA walks out on Oil and Gas Summit

A pending federal lawsuit left many attendees at the Osage Minerals Council’s Oil and Gas Summit Wednesday in Tulsa with more unanswered questions than initially expected. According to the Journal Record, Osage Agency superintendent Robin Phillips balked at answering questions from producers and other attendees less than halfway through a scheduled question and answer session […]


Pawhuska gets new arbor, Congress adjourns

Pawhuska gets new arbor, Congress adjourns

Wrapping up two days early, the 2014 Tzi-Zho session of the Osage Nation Congress is in the books. After coming into the session facing a multi-million dollar shortfall for the coming fiscal year, Congress whittled division budgets across the board by 6 percent, putting the 2015 operating budget at $43,085,985 in tribal funds. The tribe’s […]


BIA fields wind complaint

Osage Nation Chief Geoffrey Standing Bear filed a complaint with the Bureau of Indian Affairs on Monday, alleging that the company actively building a wind farm west of Pawhuska might be crushing limestone excavated from the area and using it in wind turbine foundations. It is one of the peculiarities of life in Osage County […]


Osages rid selves of Hulah

Osages rid selves of Hulah

The Osage Nation is unloading itself of one Osage County park that has proven to be a financial millstone but is considering taking over operation of another park that might hold the promise of paying for itself. Principal Chief Geoffrey Standing Bear said Monday that the nation has sent the Army Corps of Engineers a […]


Two wind suits tossed

Two wind suits tossed

A judge on Thursday threw out two of three lawsuits involving proposed wind farms in Osage County, dealing a blow to the Osage Nation’s efforts to stop a forest of industrial turbines from rising over the tallgrass prairie west of Pawhuska. Ottawa County District Court Judge Robert G. Haney, sitting by special assignment, dismissed both […]


Osage school in the offing

Osage school in the offing

Going back to school for Osages could become a very different experience from the usual public school curriculum. Chief Geoffrey Standing Bear has already started working on creating a new school for Osages – and likely non-Osages – by forming a task force to look at establishing a world-class school along the lines of Cascia […]


Like father, like daughter

Like father, like daughter

There is now a second Lohah on the Osage Nation Supreme Court. On Thursday, Elizabeth Homer was sworn in as an interim associate justice of the Osage Nation Supreme Court, making her the second generation in her family to serve on the tribe’s judiciary. Her father, Charles Lohah, was the first Osage Supreme Court chief […]


Smokey Bear celebrates 70

Smokey Bear celebrates 70

The 70th birthday of a cuddly but silent American icon who wears 60-by 30-inch Wrangler jeans was celebrated in Pawhuska and Fairfax on Friday, a day ahead of the real birthday of Smokey Bear. In a dark, humble room that morning, a pair of Bureau of Indian Affairs Osage Agency Wildland firefighters, Rann Tingtella and […]


Logan sworn in at OST

Logan sworn in at OST

Vince Logan, an Osage with roots in Hominy, was sworn in Friday as the Special Trustee for American Indians, a post that has been vacant since 2009. As the fourth trustee in history – and the second Native American in the job – Logan will oversee about $4.4 billion in assets held in trust by […]


New Osage chief lauded

New Osage chief lauded

Prompting a round of applause and a chorus of lulus, Geoffrey Standing Bear was sworn Wednesday morning in as principal chief of the Osage Nation at the tribe’s Ponca City casino. A former assistant chief under the tribe’s previous form of government, Standing Bear served a four-year term in Congress and received more than 70 […]


Wind fight on three fronts

Wind fight on three fronts

The Osage Nation and Minerals Council sued the Osage County Board of Commissioners, Board of Adjustment and Osage Wind LLC  last week, seeking to stop construction of a 94-turbine wind farm that was approved in 2011 in what the nation describes as an illegal action by the Board of Adjustment. The filing of the petition […]


Eagle suit filed

Last year, Osage County was ground zero in the battle that pits bird conservationists against wind power. Osage Wind, which is bulldozing roads and turbine pads on the prairie 13 miles west of Pawhuska as court battles loom over the legality of its permit to do so, had asked the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service […]


Minerals Council sworn in

Minerals Council sworn in

The Osage Nation and Minerals Council sued the Osage County Board of Commissioners, Board of Adjustment and Osage Wind LLC  last week, seeking to stop construction of a 94-turbine wind farm that was approved in 2011 in what the nation describes as an illegal action by the Board of Adjustment. The filing of the petition […]


Boone banned in June

Boone banned in June

The Osage Minerals Council voted Wednesday to ban one of its own from its offices, but how it will be enforced is anyone’s guess. Citing the need to protect its office staff, the council made the move to block Councilwoman Cynthia Boone from being in the council office under the terms of an anti-hostile workplace […]