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Chronicles of Oklahoma
Volume 10, No. 3
September, 1932
CENTENNIAL OF THE
TOUR ON THE PRAIRIES

By Washington Irving (1832-1932)

Page 426

In October, 1832, Washington Irving, then the most famous American author, visited Eastern Oklahoma, then called the Indian Territory. He was not only then the best known American author but he was the first American who really became noted as a writer of books. Born in 1783, he had received only a common school education. At the age of nineteen, he became a clerk in a law office and a student of law. About that time, however, he began to write for publication. Although he was admitted to the bar in due time, he did not practice law and, before he was thirty, he had become well known as a writer, not only in his native land but in Great Britain as well. He was a writer of humorous imaginary stories and also of history and biography. He had traveled more in Europe than he had in his own country.

In the spring of 1832, while returning from Europe, Mr. Irving found among his fellow voyagers on shipboard, Charles J. Latrobe, an Englishman, and Count Albert de Pourtales, a Swiss youth, both of French descent, and each much younger than he was. They became well acquainted before they landed in America, where they separated for a time. Later in the summer, Mr. Irving accompanied them in a tour of the White Mountains, which he had never previously visited. Shortly afterward, they visited him at his home near New York City, after which they went to Niagara Falls. At Buffalo, they all took passage on a Lake Erie steamer which was bound for Detroit.

After leaving Buffalo, a difference arose between Mr. Irving and his traveling companions. He wanted them to go with him on a trip through Kentucky and Tennessee, while they wanted to travel through Ontario, into French Canada (Quebec). He had decided to leave the boat at Ashtabula and go on to Kentucky alone. Happily, just then, they met Judge Henry L. Ellsworth, of Connecticut, who had recently been appointed by President Jackson as a member of a board of commissioners to arrange for the removal of the Indians of several tribes in the southern states to their new lands in the Indian Territory. He told them that he was then on his way west to the Territory to take a trip into the interior wilderness for the purpose of trying to meet the Indians of some of the untamed tribes of that region. He invited them to accompany him, so, dropping their differences as well as their plans, all became eager to take part in the excursion thus proposed.

Landing at Ashtabula, the party traveled across Ohio to Cincinnati, where a brief stop was made. Thence, the next stop in the journey was Louisville, Kentucky, where after another brief visit, the members of the party boarded a river steamboat for a voyage to the mouth of the Ohio River and then up the Mississippi to St. Louis. There, nearly all travelers of that day went to outfit before journeying into any part of the great wilderness beyond. Several days were spent in St. Louis, where a camping outfit, dearborn wagon and team of horses were purchased as well as saddle horses. While there, the members of the party also met many of the leading citizens of the community, the most noted of whom was Gen. William Clark, who had been one of the leaders of the Lewis and Clark expedition, up the Missouri and over to the Pacific Coast and back, nearly thirty years before.

Map

Page 427

The first stage of the journey from St. Louis to the Indian Territory was to Independence, Missouri, Mr. Irving and Mr. Latrobe accompanying their baggage and camp wagon on horseback, while Judge Ellsworth and Count de Pourtales joined Col. Auguste P. Chouteau, the noted trader and Indian service official in taking passage on a river steamboat up the Missouri, to the landing nearest to Independence. (Colonel Chouteau was returning to his trading posts in the Indian Territory with the Ellsworth-Irving party.)

The party left Independence on September 28, going southward through the extreme western part of Missouri. Wild game, including deer, bears, wild turkeys, prairie chickens, etc., was fairly plentiful almost from the start, so the travelers found considerable sport with their dogs and guns. On the third day, the party arrived at Harmony Mission station where a school was maintained for Osage Indian children and here the travelers were hospitably entertained. The Osage River was crossed at that point. Few settlers were found along the way. After four days of travel in a southward course, the route shifted to the southwestward, across the Missouri boundary into what afterward became a part of the state of Kansas. The valley of the Neosho was crossed near the site of the present town of Oswego, in Labette County, Kansas, after which the course again shifted to the southward, crossing into the Indian Territory, south of Chetopa.

The next important stop that was made was at the Hopefield Mission station, in the valley of the Neosho, in the vicinity of the present village of Ketcham, in the southeastern part of Craig County, Oklahoma. After dining with Superintendent and Mrs. Requa of the mission station, an afternoon jaunt of twelve or fifteen miles brought the party to the trading establishment of their fellow traveler, Colonel Chouteau, on the site of the present village of Salina, in Mayes County, on the evening of October 6th. After spending the night and more than half of the next day at Colonel Chouteau's place, Mr. Irving and Judge Ellsworth set out ahead of the rest of the party, going first to Union Mission station, which was located on the west bank of the Neosho, in the southern part of Mayes County. After spending the night there, they drove on south to the trading posts on the lower Verdigris and thence to Fort Gibson, where they were the guests of the post commander, General Arbuckle.

Upon arriving at the Fort, Commissioner Ellsworth and Mr. Irving were surprised to learn that a troop of mounted rangers had started up the valley of the Arkansas from Fort Gibson, with instructions to circle southward toward Red River, over the hunting grounds of the Indians of the untamed tribes of the Great Plains. Inasmuch as Commissioner Ellsworth was anxious to meet some of the members of those tribes, arrangements were quickly made to dispatch a courier to overtake the Ranger expedition and have it halted until the Commissioner could overtake it.

A day was occupied in preparation for this new journey, all unnecessary baggage being stored at Colonel Chouteau's trading post, at the falls of the Verdigris, some six or seven miles distant from Fort Gibson. (This trading post also served as a sub-agency for that portion of the Osage tribe which was located in the valleys of the Neosho and Verdigris rivers.) In describing the preparations which were made for this journey into the unbroken wilderness, Mr. Irving afterward wrote as follows:

"We now made all arrangements for prompt departure. Our baggage had hitherto been transported on a light wagon, but we were now to break our way through an untraveled country, cut up by rivers, ravines and thickets, where a vehicle of the kind would be a complete impediment. We were to travel on horseback, in hunter's style, and with as little incumbrance as possible. Our baggage, therefore, underwent a rigid and most abstemious reduction. A pair of saddle-bags, and those by no means crammed, sufficed for each man's scanty wardrobe and, with his great coat, were to be carried upon the steed he rode. The rest of the baggage was placed on pack-horses. Each one had a bear-skin and

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a couple of blankets for bedding, and there was a tent to shelter us in case of sickness or bad weather. We took care to provide ourselves with flour, coffee and sugar, together with a small supply of salt pork for emergencies; for our main subsistence we were to depend upon the chase."

Several additional saddle horses were purchased, so that the riders might change to fresh steeds occasionally, especially in the expectation animals would become tired in the chase of game.

When Mr. Irving and Commissioner Ellsworth left Fort Gibson to go to the Chouteau trading post, on the Verdigris River, they were accompanied by General Matthew Arbuckle, who was the founder and for many years the commander of Fort Gibson, and by Samuel Houston, former member of Congress and governor of Tennessee, who was then living among the Cherokee people, and who was destined to be the great military and political leader of Texas within a few years thereafter. At the trading post there was found, already present and ready for duty, fifteen rangers under the command of Lieutenant Joseph Pentecost, which detachment had been detailed for escort duty with Commissioner Ellsworth and his friends until the main expedition should be overtaken. Mr. Irving mentioned these rangers and briefly described them as follows:

"Here was our escort awaiting our arrival; some were on horseback, some on foot, some seated on the trunks of fallen trees, some shooting at a mark. They were a heterogeneous crew; some in frock coats made of green blankets; others in leathern hunting-shirts, but the most part in marvellously ill-cut garments, much the worse for wear and evidently put on for rugged service."

There were also a number of Indians at the trading post, or "agency," as Mr. Irving called it. These he described as follows:

"Near by these was a group of Osages: stately fellows; stern and simple in garb and aspect. They wore no ornaments; their dress consisted merely of blankets, leathern leggings and moccasins. Their heads were bare; their hair was cropped close, except a bristling ridge on the top, like the crest of a helmet, with a long scalp-lock hanging behind. They had fine Roman countenances, and broad, deep chests; and, as they generally wore their blankets wrapped round their loins, so as to leave the bust and arms bare, they looked like so many noble bronze figures. The Osages are the finest looking Indians I have ever seen in the West. They have not yielded sufficiently, as yet, to the influence of civilization to lay by their simple Indian garb, or to lose the habits of the hunter and the warrior; and their poverty prevents their indulging in much luxury of apparel.

"In contrast to these was a gaily dressed party of Creeks. There is something, at the first glance, quite oriental in the appearance of this tribe. They dress in calico hunting shirts of various brilliant colours, decorated with bright fringes and belted with broad girdles, embroidered with beads: they have leggings of dressed deer-skins or of green or scarlet cloth, with embroidered knee-bands and tassels: their moccasins are fancifully wrought and ornamented and they wear gaudy handkerchiefs tastefully bound round their heads."

At this stage of the journey Commissioner Ellsworth and Mr. Irving jointly decided that they needed the services of an experienced and skilled scout, guide and hunter. An applicant appeared to ask for employment in such capacity in the person of Pierre Beatte, a Creole-Frenchman, of Canadian antecedents and remotely of Indian descent. He stated the wages he would expect but, seemingly, was indifferent as to whether or not his offer was accepted. He was employed, despite the fact that Mr. Irving did not like his slouchy appearance and taciturn, almost surly manner. Yet, long before the wilderness tour was over, he had won the unquestioned confidence and respect of every member of the party and inevitably became one of the chief figures in the narratives of Messrs. Irving and Latrobe.

The first three days of travel were westward and northwestward up the valley of the Arkansas River, in the present Wagoner County. In the course of this advance, they passed through several settlements of

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the Creek Indians, who had been the first of their tribe to migrate to the Indian Territory, where they had arrived only three or four years previously. On the morning of the fourth day, before camp had been broken, the two Creek Indians, who had been sent as couriers from Fort Gibson to overtake the Ranger expedition with an order for it to await the arrival of the Commissioner and his fellow travelers, rode up and reported that their duty had been performed and that the Expedition was awaiting the arrival of the Commissioner's party, at a point about fifty miles distant, where there was a good camping place and an abundance of game. A long march was made during that day, during the course of which the party entered Tulsa County.

With an early start on the morning of the fifth day out, the party came to a bee tree which had recently been cut, so its members were sure that they had arrived in the vicinity of the encampment of the Ranger expedition. Going on through the woods, they came in sight of the camp, in the valley of a small stream, about six miles south of the present city of Tulsa. There was evidence of mutual joy on the part of the rangers and of the new arrivals at camp. The latter were immediately supplied with fresh venison and a bucket filled with honey. Captain Jesse Bean extended a cordial welcome to Commissioner Ellsworth, Mr. Irving and the other members of the party. He was a man of marked personality and extended experience. A native of Tennessee, he had entered the army during the second war with Great Britain and he had been with General Andrew Jackson at the Battle of New Orleans. Subsequently, he had become a pioneer settler in Arkansas. At the outbreak of the Black Hawk War, in the previous spring season, he had been commissioned captain of one of the six companies of rangers which were to be recruited and organized to serve for a year. He had recruited his troop in his native state and in Arkansas Territory. Every man in the command was an expert marksman with the rifle, but Captain Bean was acknowledged to be the most skilful of all, not only with the rifle but in every phase of woodcraft as well.

The expedition remained in camp during the rest of the day. In the afternoon, Mr. Irving accompanied a number of rangers who went out on a wild bee hunt. He described in detail how the bee tree was located, how it was cut down, split open and robbed of its store of sweets. When he returned to camp, it was to find Captain Bean, the doctor and several of the older men gathered in consultation about a map of the frontier. Finally, Pierre Beatte was called into conference to tell what he knew of the lay of the land ahead of the expedition. As a result of this conference, it was decided to cross the Arkansas River just above the mouth of the Red Fork (Cimarron River). The next morning (October 14th) the expedition marched across the site of Tulsa, with never a sign or a suggestion of the great city that was to be built there before the end of another century. The day's march was continued until late in the hope of reaching Red Fork, but was still a long way off when camp was pitched, somewhere west of Sand Springs. That evening a young ranger, whose name was McClellan, shot and killed an elk—the first animal of its kind which had been killed since the outset of the expedition. Other young rangers promptly lifted McClellan on their shoulders and made a noisy demonstration of their appreciation of his achievement and everybody had elk-meat for supper that night.

The expedition arrived at the mouth of the Red Fork, or Cimarron River on the next day (October 15). The head of the column reached the river about half a mile above the confluence of the two rivers, but the bank was too high and too steep and the current of the river was too swift for a safe crossing at that point, so Beatte was sent off upstream in search of a possible ford. He returned after a time to announce that he had found such a place that, by angling across on sand-bars, the horses would only have to swim a short distance. Leaving the rangers to thus make their way across the river, he prepared to move the camp outfit of the Commissioner and Mr. Irving's party across in a very novel craft

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which he seemed to improvise for the occasion. While passing the camp of a band of Osage Indians, several days before, he had secured the hide of a large buffalo. This large dry hide now came into use. A heavy rawhide cord was passed through small holes which had been cut at intervals around near the edge of this buffalo hide and then drawn up so that a hollow, trough-shaped receptacle was formed, sticks being placed athwart to keep it in shape. Into this the camp equipage was piled and it was set afloat on the surface of the river. A cord was attached to one end, which Beatte took between his teeth, Tonish, the Creole French cook, swimming in the rear, to guide and help propel this strange craft and its cargo to the other side of the river. When it was unloaded on the other bank, they returned for saddles, guns and other equipment, Mr. Irving also making the voyage across on that trip. A third trip, brought the rest of their belongings, with Commissioner Ellsworth as a passenger. Mr. Latrobe and Count de Pourtales crossed with the horses of the party, with the rangers at the ford, a mile and a half upstream. Captain Bean and the doctor built a raft on which their effects were ferried to the west bank of the river.

After all were across, many of the rangers and some of the members of the Irving party scattered out in quest of game, as tracks of many different animals—elk, deer, antelope, bears, racoons, turkeys and waterfowl were very numerous at the edge of the river. Mr. Irving and Captain Bean went up the valley about a mile and a half above the ranger crossing, there they came to a little rivulet that flowed out from a deep ravine which penetrated the high bluff, following this back for a quarter of a mile, they found the fountain source in a fine spring at the foot of a ruggedly beautiful rocky glen. Others joined them and finally the camp was pitched in the little valley. Captain Bean went out on the highlands to the west, where he found a herd of about twenty elk, one of which he wounded but he did not succeed in finding it. The camp was well supplied with fresh meat, however—venison and wild turkeys. Several of the men were lost, on the other side of the river, and did not get into camp that evening. However there was no feeling of alarm, as "Old Ryan," an experienced hunter and woodsman was with them and all were confident that he would find the camp and bring the others in with him. He was the oldest man with the rangers.

This heavily wooded, rocky glen where the expedition encamped on the night of October 15, 1832, is located in the extreme eastern part of Pawnee County, Oklahoma, about three miles north of the village of Keystone, which is in the northwestern part of Tulsa County. Except for the fact that the ledge, which projected over the spring, has broken and fallen, the glen is unchanged and is still as wild and romantically beautiful as it was a century ago when it was visited by the Sage of Sleepy Hollow. The spring is still running and is locally known as the Washington Irving spring.

When the expedition moved toward the west, the next morning, some time was spent in hunting. The body of the elk which Captain Bean had shot the evening before was found and some of the meat was saved. It was a short march of only about twelve miles, toward the west and somewhat south. The camp was pitched in the valley of House Creek, below the site of the present village of Teriton. "Old Ryan" and the other missing rangers arrived in camp that afternoon. A day of rest was taken at that point, the camp being occupied until the morning of the 18th.

Although Pierre Beatte was a skilled huntsman—in fact, during his later life, he was often called "Beatte, the meat Better"—he had had such poor success in his efforts at hunting during the fore part of this excursion that the rangers were inclined to discount his ability and make light of his skill while, on his part, he held them all in contempt because they knew nothing of plainscraft or hunting the buffalo. After crossing the Arkansas River, his "luck seemed to turn" and his skill and success as a hunter soon won the admiration and respect of the whole command, though he still remained reticent, morose and sullen.

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The day's march on the 18th was not a long one, ending in the valley of Lagoon Creek, several miles south of the present village of Jennings, about where the state highway crosses that stream between, that town and Oilton. During the next three days, the expedition was traveling in southwestward and westward directions across the present Payne County. One night it encamped at or near the site of the present town of Yale, in the northeastern part of the county; the next night's camp was approximately where the railway station of Mehan is now located, on Stillwater creek, a few miles above the mouth of that stream. The next day's march (October 21st) took the expedition to the lower valley of another creek that was a tributary to the Red Fork or Cimarron River, some seven or eight miles west of Perkins. Shortly before reaching the ground where the camp was pitched, a wild horse had been discovered. Although some effort was made to effect its capture, it easily evaded its pursuers and escaped into a thick growth of blackjack and post-oak timber, so the chase was abandoned, for the time being at least.

The camp was pitched about one o'clock in a grove of walnut and oak trees, free of underbrush, on the bank of a creek, as already stated. Shortly afterward, Beatte rode up and dismounted and was then noticed as he shifted his saddle to his best horse, took his riata and rifle and rode away. It was evident that he was going after the wild horse and that, in doing so, he preferred to hunt alone. Trailing its tracks, he finally located it. Taking a circuitous route it made for the Cimarron River, which it crossed. Following it, Beatte discovered from its tracks in the sand that it had one defective hoof, whereupon he abandoned the chase and started for camp by the most direct route. On the way, he started up a band of six wild horses which also made for the river, which they crossed with Beatte in hot pursuit. He succeeded in throwing a noose over the head of a fine two-year-old colt. Twice after he had roped it, the rope was jerked from his hand in the timber but each time he succeeded in recovering the end of the rope. Finally he had played the young animal until he had it tired and was subdued. First he led it back to the place he had had to drop his rifle after which he took it back across the river and on into camp. The arrival of the wilderness hunter in the camp, leading the young mustang, created intense excitement, everybody in camp crowding around to admire the animal and to fling a flood of questions at its captor, who, however, remained imperturably silent and taciturn. Later in the privacy of a small campfire circle, he told the story of the capture to Mr. Irving and his traveling companions.

The whole incident of the capture of the wild horse was the talk of the camp, not only that evening but the next morning as well. Every one of the rangers became possessed of an ambition to capture a mustang steed to ride back to his home, at the expiration of his term of service. And Beatte, who, a few days before, had been regarded as an inferior, had suddenly become the hero in the eyes of the rangers. Many offered to buy the animal but Beatte scorned every such proposition. Within a day or two he had the mustang colt bearing a light burden as a pack horse with the rest of the train. And it is probably not a mere coincidence that the creek where the camp was located when Beatte brought in the wild colt is called Wild Horse Creek to this day.

The next morning, the cavalcade turned its course to the south and, at the end of a march of three or four miles, came to the bank of the Cimarron, or Red Fork, at a point where the channel was about 300 yards wide, with shallow waters flowing about and between sand-bars. Everyone came to a halt as if uncertain whether to attempt to ford the stream lest quicksands be encountered. Then Beatte rode up, leading the young mustang. Handing the halter rope to Tonish, without a word, he boldly rode across the river and was quickly followed by the whole troop. Prairie land was encountered as the rangers ascended the upland but when they reached the top of the hill, there was a vast stretch of timberland beyond—the "cross-timbers," as such growths were called in those days and for many years afterward. Into this tangled, stunted forest

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growth the expedition marched and, through it, for many weary, toilsome miles, they continued to march. The first buffalo were encountered by the command that day. The camp that night was a rather desolate one but, for variety, Tonish, the boastful cook, who had followed and killed a tough old buffalo bull, arrived with a supply of meat. Then there was a needless Indian scare when no Indians were near. With such excitement, there was but little sleep during the fore part of the night.

Early on the next morning's march, a creek was crossed at a point where its channel was spanned by a beaver dam, with a pond of water impounded. This was in the present Logan County, on Bear Creek, about where the village of Meridian is now located. After marching fourteen toilsome miles through the tangled "cross-timbers," the expedition went into camp near the head of Coffee Creek, some four or five miles northeast of Edmond, in the present Oklahoma County. The edge of the "Grand Prairie" was within a mile or two of the camp, but the effect of the unwarranted Indian scare of the night before was plainly evident. There was much uneasiness lest they come in contact with the dreaded "Pawnees," which name had become a general term for all of the untamed Indian tribes of the Plains. Moreover, the expedition was practically out of provisions, while their horses were becoming jaded, having passed beyond the range where the wild peas upon which they had grazed so bountifully in the earlier portion of the journey. Plainly, there was discouragement as well as anxiety among the leaders as also in the rank and file of the command. Accordingly, after counselling together, it was decided to turn back toward the southeast, where it was hoped to find a growth of cane, which would furnish nutritious pasturage, in the valley of the Canadian River.

When the expedition resumed its march on the morning of October 24th, it was to follow the course of Coffee Creek down to its confluence with the Deep Fork of the Canadian, fifteen miles northeast of Oklahoma City and within half a mile of the site of the present village of Arcadia. At the end of this short march for the day, camp was pitched for another night. Crossing Deep Fork early the next morning, the expedition made a "toilsome and harrassing march" mostly up-grade over a rough and more or less broken country, to the valley of the North Canadian River, which was approached at a point where the river swings back toward the south after its big bend to the north, about two miles north and a little west of the site of the village of Jones. It was at this juncture that an attempt was made to "ring" or surround a band of wild horses that was found grazing in the valley—an incident which was wont to appeal mightily to the imagination of young America when it was read in McGuffey's reader, two and three generations ago. That evening, camp was pitched by a small ravine, within a mile or two southeast of the site of the village of Spencer. The next morning (October 26) it moved a short distance of not over three or four miles, over to the valley of Crutcho Creek, where it lay in camp through the three days of a dreary autumnal rainstorm. With the return of clear weather, on the morning of October 29th, the march was resumed toward the south, when a small group of Osage warriors was met. By these, the leaders of the expedition were advised to incline their course to the southwest if it was desired to find buffalo. This was done and the next camp was pitched near the head of Little River, at or near the site of the present village of Moore, in northern Cleveland County, where two days were spent in hunting buffalo and chasing wild horses.

A notable incident of this hunting camp was the mishap of the young Count de Pourtales, who, in the excitement of the chase, had passed out of the valley of Little River over a low divide into that of a neighboring creek to the westward, which is directly tributary to the South Canadian. Without realizing that he was in a different stream valley, he vainly sought for the camp and his friends. Night came on and he was lost. His friends and companions sought for him but could not find him. After a dreary night in which he and his horse were almost continuously ser-

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enaded by wolves, he found his friends as they were searching for him, the next morning. And that little stream where he spent a lonely night, is still called Lost Creek to this day!

When the expedition resumed its march on the morning of October 31st, it was to descend the valley of Little River, in a southeastward direction, on the south side to a point near the center of the present Cleveland County, about eight miles east of Norman. There the whole valley was found to be so flooded that it was difficult to find a ford. When the stream was crossed on the morning of November 1st, the course of the journey swung to a direction north of east, the camp for that day being pitched somewhere in the vicinity of the site of Tecumseh. The next camp was located in the northwestern part of Seminole County, within five or six miles of the site of the present village of Keokuk Falls.

By this time, the last of the provisions were exhausted and game was scarce. Moreover, the horses were becoming weak as the result of insufficient feed. To an extent, the command became more or less scattered during the day and, more and more, it became every man for himself, to struggle through to the end of the journey. The North Canadian River was crossed several miles below Keokuk Falls, near the mouth of Turkey Creek, during the forenoon of November 3d, and the camp was set up within three or four miles of the site of Paden, in Okfuskee County, to the south or southeast.

With weariness and sufferings increasing incident to privation, the camp on the evening of the 4th was on New York Creek, within two or three miles of the site of the village of Okfuskee. On the evening of the 6th, the camp was in the valley of Deep Fork, two or three miles above the site of the present city of Okmulgee. The camp on November 6th—the "hunger camp"—was located in the extreme eastern part of Okmulgee County. On the 7th, the half-famished rangers and travelers reached the first Creek settlements, where they secured food for themselves and feed for their starving horses. Mr. Irving arrived at Fort Gibson on November 8th—just one month after his first arrival at that post. Two days later, a small steamboat, with a cargo of supplies for the garrison, arrived and he took passage on it for the down-stream voyage.

With the joint assistance of the Oklahoma Historical Society and of the Oklahoma State Department of Education, it is planned to celebrate the centennial anniversary, or rather, the succession of centennial anniversaries, of Washington Irving's Tour on the Prairies, progressively, from day to day. Neither the Department of Education nor the Historical Society wishes to play an officious part in these successive local celebrations. Rather, they wish only to extend such assistance and encouragement as may be desired by those in charge of the local celebrations. While these agencies will be glad to co-operate in the formulation of programs for such local celebrations, it is felt that such programs should be furnished by home talent as far as possible, while these celebrations are to be held in a few communities in the east-central part of the state, the people of the whole commonwealth will be more or less interested in the success of the undertaking. Indeed, this is but the fore-runner of other historical celebrations on account of other notable incidents and events in the history of Oklahoma. The active co-operation of county and city superintendents of schools, of principals and teachers, of local school boards, of publishers of local newspapers, of chambers of commerce or commercial clubs, of civic clubs, of women's clubs and of patriotic societies is bespoken and will be appreciated.

—JOSEPH B. THOBURN.

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