Connected successfully  The Okie Legacy: Vol 18, Iss 7 B. S. Barnes Hears From Senators (1904)

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                             Volume 18, Issue 7 -- 2016-02-15                     

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B. S. Barnes Hears From Senators (1904)


It was in 1904, Sunday, 2 October, The Wichita Daily Eagle, out of Wichita, Kansas, page 10, headlines read: "Hears From Senators." Mr. B. S. Barnes of Ponca City, O.T., had written to and received replies from all the US Senators in regards to the position of the two political parties in reference in statehood for Oklahoma and Indian territory. Should the new state be two states or united into one state?

It makes you wonder "what if," doesn't it? What if there had been two states added (Oklahoma and Indian Territory) to the Union? What would it look like today in the 21st Century?

Found on Newspapers.com

Ponca City, O.T., Oct. 1 (1904) -- B. S. Barnes, of this city, had accomplished something of which probably no other private citizen in the Untied States could boast back in 1904. He had written to and received replies from every member of the Untied states senate.

And the letters were instructive, especially as regards the position nationally of the two political parties in reference to statehood for Oklahoma and Indian territory. In each case Mr. Barnes wrote very briefly, asking the opinion of the senator addressed as to whether the two territories should be untied or come in as separate states. Every republican senator expressed the belief that the territories should be untied, while every Democrat took the opposite view.

Mr. Barnes had some of the letters published, and they had created something of a sensation in the Democratic ranks of the territory. Frank Mathews, the Democratic candidate for delegate to congress, was advocating the union of the two territories, and had gone so far as to claim to be able to line the Democrats in congress up for such a measure.

An interesting feature of Mr. Barnes' letters is that each Democrat gave as a reason for his piston the fact that he believed it would be unjust to deprive the territories of four senators, while by uniting them they would be entitled to only two.
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