Marine Corps Captain Claude Andrew Phillips was proud, happy, and victorious when he returned home from France after World War I. He was in his early thirties and he wasn't about to stick around Watertown, New York. He made his way to Okmulgee, Oklahoma, where he took over a hotel and saloon he had won in a card game on the cruise home. The real prize turned out to be my mother--a teenage Cherokee girl who helped her mother with the housekeeping.