Rev. Jesse Humes
1887 - 1966
Reverend Jesse Humes, a fluent speaker of English, Choctaw, and Chickasaw, was very aware of the importance of his cultural heritage and worked with his wife Vinnie May (James) Humes to compile A Chickasaw Dictionary.
First published in 1973, the book was one of the first efforts to preserve the Chickasaw language in printed form.
Rev. Humes was also very active in political matters, acting as an advisor to Gov. Douglas Johnston. He also represented the tribe for many years in Washington, D.C., and worked to establish the governorship as a position elected by the Chickasaw people.
He was a Methodist minister for 34 years, riding on horseback from town to town to tend his flock.
He not only attended school at Wapanucka Boys Academy and the Manual Labor School at Lebanon, Oklahoma, but completed summer courses for many years at Oklahoma City University.
As a life-long learner, he was a strong advocate for tribal education programs. He left a legacy of activism and accomplishment for the people and government of the Chickasaw Nation.