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Dear Ms. Wheeler,
Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!
If the applicants were not current tribal members, their applications could still be approved based on an ancestor, based on the 1830 treaty or the 1837 and 1842 acts. The card you mention is probably a Census Card or Enrollment Cards, 1898 - 1914 in the Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs (Record Group 75) that are often the first step used to research an individual.
We suggest that your next step should be to research the Applications for Enrollment in the Five Civilized Tribes, 1898 - 1914 in Record Group 75, which include the enrollment jackets that provide more detailed information about proving tribal membership. These records have been digitized and are available using the Catalog.
If they were already members of the tribal nation, approval was rather pro forma. Therefore, the enrollment jackets may not delve into their genealogy..
We hope this is helpful. Best of luck with your research!
[Information provided by Cody White, Subject Matter Expert]