Connected successfully  The Okie Legacy: Vol 18, Iss 37 1889, I.T., All Headed For Oklahoma

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                             Volume 18, Issue 37 -- 2016-10-13                     

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1889, I.T., All Headed For Oklahoma


As we learn more about the Run of 1889 into Indian Territory, we find the Chicago Tribune, Chicago, Illinois, dated 19 April 1889, Friday, page 1, with he following headlines: "All Headed For Oklahoma." Reports from Southwestern towns were showing the rush to be increasing.

Found on Newspapers.com

Fort Smith, Ark., April 18 (1889) -- Long trains of wagons bound for Oklahoma were disappearing, and in their places hundreds of boomers were passing through bound for Muskogee, which was one-third of the distance between this city and the border. James Screed, a prominent merchant of Conway, Arkansas, had organized a party of boomers said to represent $500,000, and pushed through in a special car over the Missouri Pacific during the night.

A feature of boomers' outfits was the abundance of arms. A party coming through by wagons on that day were halted by a constable and two men arrested for carrying concealed weapons. Upon learning of this the boomers all carried their guns in their hands, passing through the city unmolested. The procession as the most belligerent outfit ever seen here. Pistols of all kinds and knives of all degrees of deadlines were carried through to the number of several thousand.

Deputy Marshal Hawkins arrived there at daylight and said that a large body of troops, headed by body of Indian Sheriffs of the Wichita Agency, were on the trail of the cattlemen who did the fighting at Canadian Ford, and more trouble at the same place was imminent. Cattlemen had been herding in that valley for many years and offered resistance when compelled to move out.

Naturally, they had the sympathy of the boomers along that borders and the combined forces threatened desperate measures if molested again. Sacred Heart Mission, a small post just across the Pottawattomie border, had sprung from a place of 150 inhabitants to one of 3,500. Shawneetown had expanded similarly. Wellington, Kas., April 18 (1889) -- The stream of prairie schooners moving southward had not diminished. The streets of the city were filled with boomers, and they continued to pour in from the North, eAst, and wEst. Such an emigration had never before been witnessed in this section. Old settlers familiar with he Cimarron River, which all settlers entering Oklahoma from the northwest cross, said that its waters were high and that it was as much as a man's life is worth to cross it in its swollen condition. Its bed was composed in a large part of shifting quicksand, and where a sage crossing could be made today tomorrow, in all probability, the same place would be a death trap. Many parties who intended to go from here with teams had abandoned the attempt and would go by rail, being fearful of serious accidents in fordin thsi river.

Winfield, Kas, April 18 (1889) - Almost a continual line of covered wagons passed through there. One colony of 500 left on that date to be on the line early tomorrow, when they were allowed on the Cherokee strip. All the streams there were high, and some of the boomers were preparing to cross the railroad bridges by laying planks across and leading their horses. Guthrie would receive most of the boomers and business. There would be seventeen different lumber yards, and other business tin proportion.

Purcell, I.T., April 18 (1889) -- The South Canadian had overflowed the country and the boomers believed that it would not subside sufficiently for them to ford it the 22d. Desperate schemes were talked of to force an entrance and troops were being rushed in front he east and west. The main body of the boomers from he north - about 1,500 wagons - reached a ranch thirteen miles south of Arkansas City and were camped there for the night.

Topeka, Kas., April 18 (1889) - Eight carloads of mules went through he city on a fast freight on the Rock Island to Pond creek, Indian Territory. They would be used to transport the Rock Island's Oklahoma settlers over the stage route in addition to those already provided by the stage company. The reports of high water in the Cimarron were so conflicting that General Passenger and Ticket Agent Sebastian left for Caldwell, where two immense ferries were to be constructed under his supervision, to be used if found necessary. Indications point to a small migration from this city and vicinity, but advices from the east and south shoed that the new Territory was the principal topic.
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