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Graphics by Rhio

 The Beginning of Tulsa
By J. M. Hall (1927)

(c) Karolyn Kay Garland (1997)

Nothing here is free for the taking. This book is reproduced here with the permission of the copyright holder - see copyright statement.

 Page 60

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Sam McBirney (con't)

their four sons, J. H., Sam, Leander and Robert. Mrs. McBirney lives with the two daughters and the two younger sons.

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        There have been more "stories" told about the town of Red Fork than almost any other in this section. The statement has been published that Red Fork was a town long before Tulsa and that at one time it was a much larger town than Tulsa. Neither of these is correct.
        The writer's first trip across the river from Tulsa was in 1883. P. L. Yoakum had bought a herd of steer cattle from a ranch on Duck creek and was to accept delivery on the prairie just a little west of where Red Fork was located later.
        In those days in all business deals of this kind payment was made in cash - there being no banks in the section. Yoakum had brought about $10,000 from Kansas and was afraid to make the trip across the river alone. The writer and another man rode with him, spaced about 200 feet apart. There was no sign of a town at Red Fork. A Mr. Harmon, an inter-married citizen, lived about a quarter of a mile from where Red Fork is now located.
        Chauncey A. Owen endorsed this statement. "I know when the railroad was extended to Red Fork," he says. "There was no town there at that time."


        Lon R. Stansbery and his father located a claim near Chandler in 1889 but soon afterward moved to Tulsa. Lon was a strapping young fellow and not afraid to work. The Lynch brothers were excavating for their stone store building at First and Main streets about that time.
        They needed someone to hold the scraper and Lon began his business career doing this.
        After this job was ended he was in the collection business for a time and later clerked in the Lynch store for five years and in the Gamble Mercantile Co. store for two years. Then he entered the implement business and erected a brick building which still stands on East 3rd street between Main and Boston avenue. He needed more room and put up an other building on South Main street and later erected a larger building on Boulder avenue. Much more recently he erected a building at East Fourth street and Frankfort avenue and leased it to the government as a sub-postoffice. He has made a brilliant financial success and is a director of the National Bank of Commerce, and a member of the chamber of commerce.
        He is president of the Old Timers association and takes great delight in having its members picnic at his park and lake seven miles east of Tulsa each year. He is a great entertainer-a whole show in himself and will never be forgotten. He and Mrs. Stansbery live at 235 W. 18th street.


        After the Frisco had completed the depot and round-house in Tulsa the officials decided to extend the line across the river because there would be a more convenient place from which to ship cattle. The cattle could be driven in from the west and southwest without crossing the river.
        Buffalo Bridge Co. representatives came to Tulsa in the fall of 1882 to look over the location and acquire stone for the piers of the bridge. One of these men was a 250 pounder but he rode a saddle pony well and, with the writer, rode into what is now Osage county. Two deer passed, going north through the timber. The writer followed them and got a shot at one but didn't score. Then he heard another report from the spot where the big man had been left. The bridge man had taken a tip and had concealed himself behind a tree to await the third deer that was quite sure to follow and had killed it. He was trying vainly to hang it to a tree by its hind legs, and was

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