John B. Warren

A collector contacted me about two cabinet cards he had purchased from what was purported to be the estate of John B. Warren in an attempt to verify that they were in fact photographs of Carlisle Indian School students. The collector wasn’t familiar with Warren and I only knew that he played on the Carlisle Indian School football team at some point. Identifying the first one was easy. The collector was correct in that it was a photo of Martin Wheelock. He was a star on the teams from 1894 to 1902, serving as captain of the 1899 and 1901 teams. In 1899 and again in 1901, Walter Camp named Martin Wheelock as a tackle on his All America second team. Thus, his face was well known and readily identifiable. This was not the case for Warren.

Steckbeck, the first place to look for information on Carlisle Indian School football, listed a Warren as being a member of the 1899 team. The photo of the 1899 team in Steckbeck’s book identified him as being the person second from right in the middle row, next to Jonas Metoxen. He was not mentioned in the book’s text, so more research was required.

Newspaper coverage of the 1899 games had Warren as playing right guard and tackle in parts of some games. Although not a starter, Warren got some playing time that year. That was probably the extent of John’s varsity play because he graduated in March of 1900 and is included in his class photo in the commencement issue of the school newspaper.

The June 26, 1903 issue of The Red Man and Helper mentioned that “John Warren, class 1900 Carlisle, who has been attending the Minnesota State University is home.” The October 3, 1902 edition reported that his sister, “Grace Warren married a white man and is disappointed.” More research is clearly required.

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