Several descendants of former Miami resident, Paschal Fish, traveled to northern Kansas earlier this month for a dedication ceremony honoring the Shawnee minister and his daughter, Eudora.
Leota Burnett, of Miami, along with her sister Sherryl Marable, of Chelsea, and their mother, Leota McKim, of Bluejacket, made the trip to Eudora, Kan., Oct. 6, to be a part of the 150th Anniversary of the family's namesake.
The women performed the Lord's Prayer in Shawnee sign language as their offering in a dedication ceremony for a statue depicting their ancestors.
"I'm very proud of this," McKim said. "It was really something to see. And I got to meet family members I didn't even know I had."
Paschal Fish was a Shawnee Indian Tribe leader and Methodist minister, born in 1805. In 1854, Fish received 1,200 acres south of the confluence of the Wakarusa and Kansas Rivers near modern day Lawrence, Kan. The allotment was part of the treaty between the U.S. government and the Shawnee Tribe.
There he owned and operated the Fish Hotel. As a Methodist minister, Fish was also instrumental in establishing the Wakarusa Indian Mission.
Fish sold a little over 774 acres of his land to German settlers in 1857 for $10,000 with the agreement that their new town would be named after his daughter, Eudora.
In 1870, Fish left Eudora and moved to Indian Territory, near Miami.
Seven years later, at the age of 29, Eudora died unexpectedly leaving her husband, Dallas Emmons, and four children.
On Feb. 2, 1893, Fish was found frozen to death along Tar Creek.
Tom Tucker, a Sesquicentennial committee member researched the family and was able to locate many of Fish's descendants. All but one that he contacted traveled to Eudora for the celebration.
“This was a really great experience,” McKim said. “I just can't say how proud I am.”