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WEWOKA TRADING COMPANY

The Wewoka Trading Company, a once-prominent business establishment, was located in Wewoka, Seminole Nation, Indian Territory. Elijah J. Brown, a white trader, established a trading post at Wewoka in 1866. Over two decades the post passed through several owners. In 1880 Seminole Chief John F. Brown and his brother Andrew Jackson Brown bought it from Courtland L. Long. In 1891 Long repurchased an interest in the firm from the Brown brothers and named it the Wewoka Trading Company.

Located at the corner of Main Street and Wewoka Avenue, the general store offered clothing, stoves, furniture, wagons, and farm implements. Customers included whites and African Americans as well as American Indians. The company issued its own scrip, which could be exchanged at other local businesses. The vault at the Wewoka Trading Company safeguarded the Seminole Nation records and the federal annuity payments to the Seminole. In the early 1900s Charles Ross Anthony, founder of Anthony Stores, worked as a bookkeeper at the firm. Following the death of John F. Brown on October 21, 1919, the Wewoka Trading Company had a closeout sale. Wewoka Mayor C. Guy Cutlip purchased the three-story, brick building, which existed until destroyed by a fire on October 28, 1925.

SEE ALSO: OKLAHOMA ECONOMY, SHIRLEY TRADING COMPANY, TERRITORIAL ERA.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: Bruce Gilbert Carter, "A History of Seminole County, Oklahoma" (M.A. thesis, University of Oklahoma, 1932). Louise Welsh, Willa Mae Townes, and John W. Morris, A History of the Greater Seminole Oil Field (Oklahoma City: Oklahoma Heritage Association, 1981). "Wewoka Trading Company," Vertical File, Research Division, Oklahoma Historical Society, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Linda D. Wilson

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