252 A BICENTENNIAL HISTORY OF MISSISSIPPI THE GYPSY QUEEN Kelly Mitchell, Queen of the Gypsies, is buried in Meridian. Mitchell died while giving birth of what was rumored to be her fifteenth child. Even though she lived in a gypsy camp in Coatopa, Alabama, the Gypsy Queen was buried in Rose Hill Cemetery because this was the closest town with proper funeral facilities. The funeral took place twelve days after her death in order to give gypsies from all over the country time to travel to Meridian. More than 20,000 Romani people attended the funeral which turned in to an extravagant festival. Gifts, trinkets, and other offerings are still left on her grave in hopes that she will provide answers from beyond this world. PHOTO BY GREG CAMPBELL the United States. We have held the hand of the United States so long that our nails are long like bird’s claws.” In August 1826, the three main Choctaw chiefs met back in Mississippi to establish a national constitution whereby no district could sell or cede any portion of Choctaw land without the full and fair consent of the other two districts. In addition, no chief could create a contract involving annuity money without the consent of the other two chiefs. On January 19, 1830, the state of Mississippi extended its laws over all the Native Americans residing in the state. Tribal governments were established and the office of chief was outlawed. A few months later, the Indian Removal Act was passed by the national congress on May 28, 1830. Treaties proposed by the Choctaws to halt removal were rejected. The Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek, dated September 27, 1830, surrendered the Choctaw land of fields, forests, rivers, streams and wildlife in return for the promise that the Choctaw could make their own laws without government interference and that the government would provide transportation for the removal of the Choctaw Nation from Mississippi to Oklahoma. Most Choctaws traveled in their own groups on the Trail of Tears and many died along the way from the cold, severe weather. Article XIV of the treaty granted the Choctaw much land in what became Neshoba County. Those choosing to remain were promised about 640 acres. Half of that amount was also provided for each unmarried child over ten years of age and a quarter section for each child under ten, all of which would be adjoining lands. Many early deeds record land sales from the Choctaw to white settlers. Since the relocation to Oklahoma, the Oklahoma Choctaws have been called the Choctaw Nation and the Choctaws remaining in Mississippi call themselves the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians. The Creation of Counties The Legislative Act of December 23, 1833, created from the area recorded in the Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek the counties of Noxubee, Kemper, Lauderdale, Clarke, Oktibbeha, Winston, Choctaw, Tallahatchie, Yalobusha, Carroll, Jasper, Neshoba, Smith, Scott, Leake, and Attala. The same act altered the boundaries of Lowndes, Madison, and Wayne counties to extend county jurisdiction into all parts of the territory acquired by the Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek. Clarke County was named in honor of Judge Joshua G. Clarke, the first Chancellor of the State. Quitman, the county seat, was named for General John A. Quitman, an