Chronicles of Oklahoma

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Chronicles of Oklahoma
Volume 16, No. 3
September, 1938

Page 383

The regular quarterly meeting of the Board of Directors of the Oklahoma Historical Society convened in the Historical building, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, July 28, 1938, at 10:00 A. M., with Judge Robert L. Williams, President, presiding.

The Secretary called the roll which showed the following members present: Judge Harry Campbell, Judge Thomas H. Doyle, Judge Thomas A. Edwards, Dr. Grant Foreman, Judge Robert A. Hefner, Mrs. Frank Korn, Col. A. N. Leecraft, Mrs. Blanche Lucas, Mr. John B. Meserve, Hon. W. J. Peterson, Judge Wm. P. Thompson, Judge Robert L. Williams and Mr. James W. Moffitt, the Secretary.

Judge Robert A. Hefner moved that all absentees be excused on account of the rain. Motion was seconded and carried.

Judge Robert L. Williams read the following letter of presentation:

Durant, Oklahoma,
July 23, 1938.      


Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

"I herewith present and donate to the Historical Society for the Confederate room, photostatic copies of large photographs, 8¼ by 11½ inches, to-wit:

"Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederate States of America.

"Alexander H. Stephens, Vice-President of the Confederacy.

"Group picture of all members, at different periods of the cabinet of Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederacy, to-wit: Secretary of State Robert Toombs; Secretary of State R. M. T. Hunter; Secretary of the Treasury C. G. Memminger, and George A. Trenholm; Secretary of War LeRoy Pope Walker, and John C. Breckenridge, and James A. Seddon, and G. W. Randolph; Attorney General Judah P. Benjamin, and Thomas H. Watts; Secretary of Navy Stephen R. Mallory; Postmaster General J. H. Reagan; Assistant Secretary of War J. A. Campbell, formerly a Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States of America.

"I also present separate photostatic photographs of all of said members of the cabinet.

"Robert Toombs, in addition to being first Secretary of State of the Confederacy, was a member of the Confederate Senate and a Brigadier General in the Confederate Army.

"Thomas H. Watts resigned as Attorney General to become Governor of Alabama in the fall of 1863 and continued in that official position until the Confederate Government was superseded in the South.

Page 38

"Judah P. Benjamin was Attorney General until September 7, 1861, second Secretary of War, third Secretary of State.

"I also present photograph of Rear-Admiral Raphael Semmes, Confederate States Navy, Captain of the 'Alabama,' from a photograph taken in England after the loss of his ship, the Alabama.

"Also photograph of Rear-Admiral Raphael Semmes in his uniform as such evidently taken while he was in active service.

"Also photostatic photograph of Lucius Quintus Cincinnatus Lamar, Colonel of the Eighteenth Mississippi Regiment, Confederate States of America, and Confederate Commissioner to Russia, France, and England in 1863. Both before and after the Civil War he was a member of the Congress of the United States, and also United States Senator from Mississippi, after the war, and a justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.

"Also photostatic photograph of J. A. Campbell, a Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, at the organization of the Confederate States government, when he resigned and aligned himself with the Confederacy, and served as Asst. Secretary of War.

"Also photostatic photograph of James M. Mason, Confederate Commissioner to Great Britain, who was a United States Senator prior to the Civil War.

"Also two photostatic photographs of Howell Cobb, one when he was Speaker of the House of Representatives in the Congress of the United States of America, March 3, 1849—March 3, 1851; Governor of Georgia, 1851-53; Secretary of the Treasury in the cabinet of President Buchanan, March 6, 1857-December 10, 1860; Chairman of the convention of delegates from the seceded States which assembled in Montgomery, Ala., on February 24, 1861, to form a Confederate Government; during the Civil War was appointed a brigadier general in the Confederate Army February 13, 1862, and promoted to major general September 9, 1863; surrendered at Macon, Ga., April 20, 1864, then becoming a prisoner of war. Fort Cobb in Caddo County was named for him.

"Also Wm. L. Yancey, member of the Congress of the United States, prior to the Civil War, and during the Civil War was a member of the Confederate Senate and Confederate Commissioner to France and England."

Robert L. Williams.

Judge Harry Campbell moved that the photographs be accepted and that Judge Williams be thanked for this contribution and that same be framed and hung in the Confederate Memorial room, this being an authorization for such expenditure. Motion was seconded and carried.

Judge R. L. Williams read the following report on the Sequoyah Shrine project.

Durant, Oklahoma,
July 23, 1938.      

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

"As chairman of the committee on the Sequoyah Shrine project, beg to report that after the death of the late W. W. Hastings, who was Treasurer of the committee on said Shrine, that I checked up and audited the amount of funds in his hands and found said sum to be $380.03, which is on deposit to his credit as Treasurer and Trustee in the First National Bank of Tahlequah.

Page 385

"I ask this Board to confirm the appointment of R. M. Mountcastle, of Muskogee, Oklahoma, as successor to the late W. W. Hastings, a member of said committee, and the committee will then be constituted as follows:

R. L. Williams, Chairman,

Grant Foreman,

R. M. Mountcastle, Treasurer.

"The president of the First National Bank advised me that they would pay over to said committee or its treasurer the said sum of $380.03 provided that the Society, through said committee, guarantee said bank against any harm or loss in paying said sum to the order of its treasurer.

"I ask that this Board confirm such authorization.

"Beg also to report that in addition to the $380.03 on deposit with the First National Bank, Tahlequah, I have on deposit with the Durant National Bank in a special account for the Sequoyah Shrine project, the sum of $115.50, representing $100.00 contributed by Mr. Ewing Halsell of Vinita, and $15.50 returned by Dr. Grant Foreman out of a check sent him by the late W. W. Hastings to pay Mr. Fred Suhre for the bronze tablets. The expense of the tablets being only $114.50, Dr. Foreman refunded the $15.50 which I placed in that special account. The bronze tablets are in the Sequoyah Shrine Home, but as yet they have not been attached with proper fasteners. Dr. Foreman has that matter in hand and he will make report thereon.

"In May, 1938, Mr. J. W. Moffitt, Secretary, enclosed to me a statement compiled by Miss Mulholland, Chief Clerk, that there was a balance of $141.61 set aside of the private funds of the Oklahoma Historical Society that were still available on the Sequoyah Home project, and that would seem to indicate with that available sum with the two sums heretofore referred to that we have now available the total sum of $637.14, unless some later voucher has been drawn or is to be drawn against this balance of $141.61.

"We are endeavoring to get the survey made so we can submit application for an additional project to open up a 100 foot road or right of way from a point south of the Blair place going east parallel to the north wall or enclosure of said ten acres constituting the Sequoyah Shrine, thence southeast to the gate on the north side with an easement for parking.

"We have that now practically worked out and as soon as the survey is made so we can get the description, the owners have agreed to execute the easement.

"Dr. Grant Foreman has been away but Mr. R. M. Mountcastle is looking after this matter, and I have just been advised by him that he would go out with the engineer right away to get this survey made.

"Mr. Schendel, engineer at the Muskogee WPA Area Office, has agreed to make this survey.

"At the meeting in Tahlequah on May 5 and 6, 1938, resolution was made for an additional authorization of $250.00, either out of the State-appropriated funds available therefor, including funds transferred to some specific account to make them available for such purpose, or out of the private funds to be expended for this project, and finishing this matter if it was needed for such purpose, and the President was authorized to draw the voucher or requisition to be countersigned by the Secretary."

Robert L. Williams, President.

Page 386

Dr. Grant Foreman moved that the committee be authorized to carry into effect the recommendations as outlined in this report, including the appointment of Mr. R. M. Mountcastle as treasurer of this fund, and such authorization as to guaranty. Motion was seconded and carried.

Hon. W. J. Peterson moved that the committee be authorized to withdraw the said sum of $380.03 from the First National Bank at Tahlequah, guaranteeing said bank against any loss in paying said sum of money to the order of the committee's treasurer. Motion was seconded and carried.

Judge R. L. Williams read the following report on the Robert M. Jones Cemetery project:

"In the matter of Robert M. Jones Cemetery, this matter is completed. On April 26, 1938, the cornerstone was laid and dedication had. The inscription on the cornerstone is as follows:
A. F. & A. M.
(Masonic Emblem)
April 26, A. D. 1938. A. L. 5938."
Then on the other side it is inscribed as follows:
                                                  OKLAHOMA HISTORICAL SOCIETY
                                                  R. L. WILLIAMS
                                                  W. B. MORRISON
                                                  A. N. LEECRAFT
                                                  G. E. HARRIS
                                                  W. A. LOFTIN, COMMITTEE
                                            W. S. KEY, W. P. A. ADMINISTRATOR
                                            H. G. HIXSON, ENGINEER"
"The Robert M. Jones Cemetery in which he is buried, together with members of his family, is enclosed in a substantial stone wall in octagonal shape, 100 feet square on a plot of ground 300 feet square enclosing the family burying ground of Robert M. Jones, including his grave, at Rose Hill, about four and one-half miles southeast of Hugo in Choctaw County, State of Oklahoma, described as follows:
"Starting at the NW corner of Sec. 5, T. 7S, R. 18 E.; thence south along the west line of said Sec. 5 a distance of 2196 feet; thence due east a distance of 299 feet for a point of beginning; thence due south a distance of 300 feet; thence due east a distance of 300 feet; thence due north a distance of 300 feet; thence due west a distance of 300 feet to the place of beginning, containing 2.06 acres of land more or less.
"Same being a block of land 300 feet square, located in the SW ¼ of the NW ¼ of Sec. 5, T. 7 S. R. 18 E. (Choctaw Nation) of the Indian Base and Meridian (Formerly Indian Territory) according to the United States Survey thereof,

Page 387

"Covered by Guardian's deed from J. H. Randell, Guardian, to the State of Oklahoma, in Trust for the Oklahoma Historical Society. Deed filed for record on April 29, 1937, in the office of the County Clerk of Choctaw County, State of Oklahoma and recorded in Book 189, page 228.
"This plot of ground is enclosed with a substantial wire fence, animal proof, 300 feet square with a substantial gate entrance. The stone enclosure also has a substantial steel gate entrance. Within the wall is a steel flag pole painted in aluminum.
"The committee's work is now completed. We ask, however, that the President and Secretary be authorized to negotiate with the American Legion Post, at Hugo, Oklahoma, and the organization of the Daughters of the Confederacy at said place with a view of having them to take joint custodianship of these grounds. I have been advised that these organizations contemplate holding their patriotic meetings on these grounds. An American flag now floats over the grave of Robert M. Jones, a delegate from the Choctaw Nation to the Congress of the Confederate States of America, at Richmond."
This 20th day of July, A. D., 1938.

Robert L. Williams,
Chairman for said Committee.

Judge Robert A. Hefner moved that this written report be included in the minutes. Motion was seconded and carried.

The Secretary presented his report which was filed.

Judge Thomas H. Doyle moved that the reading of the minutes of the previous meeting be dispensed with at this time. Motion was seconded and carried.

The President presented Mr. Milo F. Christiansen, of the Regional Park Service, who discussed the first draft of a plan for the preservation of Oklahoma Historic sites to be worked out by the National Park Service, the State Planning Board and the Oklahoma Historical Society.

The President appointed a committee consisting of Dr. Grant Foreman, Chairman, Hon. W. J. Peterson with himself as ex-officio member to constitute a committee to work with the National Park Service and the State Planning Board in the preparation of a tentative plan for the preservation of historic sites in Oklahoma to be included in a general state plan, the function of the committee on the part of the Historical Society being merely advisory.

Mrs. Blanche Lucas moved that the Secretary of the Historical Society write each of the state historical societies and ascertain what they are doing in such matters in the way of preserving historical sites. Motion was seconded and carried.

Judge R. L. Williams read a statement concerning Fort Gibson and the appointment of a committee of five to supervise the maintenance of the Barracks building, as provided at the annual meeting May 6, 1938, and reported that he would appoint the committee later.

The question of cases for the artifacts from the Spiro mound was discussed.

Judge Robert A. Hefner moved that three center cases styled No. 9810 be emptied, the material wrapped and placed in the locked store room, and two table cases styled No. 9809 be emptied likewise and the five cases

Page 388

be used for displaying the artifacts from the Spiro mound in the east corridor of the museum. Motion was seconded and carried.

The surplus funds that will revert were discussed.

Col. A. N. Leecraft moved that the President with a committee appointed by him, be authorized to ask the legislature to re-appropriate non-used funds to extend the mezzanine floor in the basement of the newspaper stack room. Motion was seconded and carried.

The President appointed Col. A. N. Leecraft and Hon. W. J. Peterson on this committee.

Dr. Grant Foreman presented the reports of Mrs. Rella Watts, archivist in charge of the archives of the various Indian Agencies in the State of Oklahoma, deposited with the Historical Society; and the report of Mrs. Helen S. Carpenter, director of Project S-179 for indexing and cataloguing the newspapers and other papers, which reports were ordered received and filed.

It was reported that the indexing and cataloguing project No. S-179 would end about the middle of October, 1938.

Judge Robert A. Hefner moved that the President be authorized to take such action as may be necessary to extend this project S-179 for indexing, cataloguing, etc., until March 15, 1939, and to use any funds available, either state appropriation specifically available for such purpose or all such as may be available by transfer, all such transfers being hereby specifically authorized, so that such state specific appropriation or such appropriation by transfer as hereby authorized may be available for such purposes, and also any private funds that may be necessary to expend for such purpose, all state appropriations and transfer of such being exhausted. Motion was seconded and carried.

The need of more steel filing cases for cards was discussed.

Hon. W. J. Peterson moved that four steel filing cases be purchased at an approximate cost of $432.00, and the authorization of the expenditure of any available funds specifically available or by transfer available, all of which are authorized. Motion was seconded and carried.

Dr. Grant Foreman moved that the President be authorized to cause proper requisitions to be drawn for book cases to take care of the bound volumes of the Indian-Pioneer project collection, also cards for indexing and cases to hold these cards, to be paid for out of any funds available either by specific appropriation or transfer or state-appropriated funds, which are hereby authorized, and that binding of all unbound volumes of said project be completed under the same authorization for expenditure. Motion was seconded and carried.

Dr. Grant Foreman moved that the motion made by Judge Wm. P. Thompson as recorded on page 252 of Vol. 16, No. 2 of Chronicles of Oklahoma, to-wit: "The sum of $750.00 is made available from the private funds or any state-appropriated funds available for such purpose, same to be drawn on the Treasurer by voucher or order of the President, countersigned by the Secretary" is amended so as to include any State-appropriated funds of any character whether by transfer or otherwise, and that motion is so amended as to state $750.00 is set aside to be used as the sponsor's part to finance said project No. S-179, or any extension or renewal of said project, or any project in lieu thereof. Motion was seconded and carried.

The Secretary reported that the rent on typewriters for July, 1938, used by the workers on project No. S-179, had not been paid and no state funds were available to pay this rent, amounting to $17.50.

Page 389

Judge R. A. Hefner moved that this rent, i. e., $17.50 be paid out of the private funds of the Society. Motion was seconded and carried.

The Secretary read the following list of applicants for annual membership in the Society: J. R. Barbee, Tulsa; Anna L. Bockoven, Oklahoma City; Ray P. Boyce, Oklahoma City; Mrs. Ann Mayer Cooper, Chandler; Mrs. Elizabeth W. Cosgrove, Muskogee; Nathaniel Folsom, Hartshorne; Mrs. Hopewell Fox, Columbia, Mo.; Dr. James V. Frederick, Pawhuska; Hugh M. Hamill, Chilocco; C. W. Johnson, Morris; Dr. G. E. Johnson, Ardmore; Mrs. Ed T. Kennedy, Pawhuska; Rev. C. W. Kerr, Tulsa; Mrs. John C. Newton, Miami; Milton E. Parker, Oklahoma City; O. D. Sartin, Cedervale, Kans.; Mrs. H. K. Smith, Springfield, Ill.; D. D. Tidwell, DeLeon, Texas; James Watzke, Henryetta.

Col. A. N. Leecraft moved that they be elected as annual members of the Society. Motion was seconded and carried.

Judge Thomas H. Doyle moved that Mr. Moss Patterson of Oklahoma City be elected to life membership in the Society in recognition of the services rendered to the Historical Society. Motion was seconded and unanimously carried.

Dr. Grant Foreman recommended the purchase of a set of photostat copies from the National Archives, Washington, D. C., relating to the Boudinot newspaper controversy 1875, Historical sketches of Creek Council resolutions and Reports on investigations of complaints by loyal Creeks against Agent Lyons; for $19.30, and upon motion duly seconded the purchase was ordered to be paid out of the private funds of the Society.

Hon. W. J. Peterson moved that Mrs. Frank Korn be commissioned to express to Mrs. John R. Williams and Mrs. Jessie E. Moore the sympathy of the Board members on account of their illness, and hope for their speedy recovery. Motion was seconded and carried.

There being a vacancy on the Board caused by the resignation of Dr. J. B. Thoburn, Mr. John B. Meserve nominated J. B. Milam of Chelsea to fill the vacancy. Judge Wm. P. Thompson and Dr. Grant Foreman both seconded the nomination.

Judge Thomas H. Doyle nominated John B. Doolin of Alva to fill the vacancy. Judge R. A. Hefner seconded the nomination.

Hon. W. J. Peterson and Judge R. A. Hefner were appointed tellers. The vote by ballot resulted as follows: J. B. Milam received five votes and John B. Doolin received seven votes. Mr. Doolin was declared elected to fill the vacancy on the Board of Directors.

Judge Thomas H. Doyle moved that Dr. Joseph B. Thoburn be elected custodian of the Union Soldiers' Memorial Room, to begin August 1, 1938. Hon. W. J. Peterson moved that the nominations be closed and that the rules be suspended and the Secretary be instructed to cast the entire vote of the Board for Dr. Joseph B. Thoburn. The motion was seconded and carried and the Secretary cast the unanimous vote of the Board for the appointment of Dr. Joseph B. Thoburn as custodian of the Union Soldiers' Memorial Room to begin August 1, 1938.

Judge R. A. Hefner moved that the Board express its appreciation to Mrs. Kate O. Ringland for her services ad-interim after the death of her husband. Motion was seconded and carried.

Upon motion of Hon. W. J. Peterson, duly seconded, the meeting stood recessed subject to the call of the President.

Robert L. Williams, President.

James W . Moffitt, Secretary.

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