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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 64

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Tulsa Won The Road (con't)

possible. You will construct this line as near water level as possible.
        The result was that the survey by way of Tulsa was approved and agreement entered into between the railroad officials and Tulsa business men represented by George W. Mowbray, Jay Forsythe. J. M. Hall, Dr. S. G. Kennedy and L. M. Poe, as trustees, whereby the Tulsans agreed to pay the railroad company $12,000 and furnish the right of way, which brought the total cost to $15,000. Engineer W. H. Hendren had charge of the work of extending the line from Wybark to Osage Junction.
        Before the Katy railroad was built Tulsa was a country village. When Katy trains began running into the town in 1903 citizens began to see a real future.

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        C. N. Haskell, who later became the first governor of Oklahoma, and others planned to construct a railroad from Muskogee to Arkansas City by way of Sapulpa. Mr. Haskell naturally had a lot to do with locating the line. A number of Tulsa business men went to Muskogee to interview him and finally he agreed to have a survey made by way of Tulsa. The survey showed that the rail road could be built along this line with less expense than the other way, and through a better country. Mr. Haskell set his price for a bonus. It was about $15,000. After very hard work this was raised and in September, 1903, the first Midland Valley train pulled into Tulsa.
        Meanwhile the Santa Fe railroad had taken over a line that had been built from Caney, Kan., to Owasso, Indian Territory, by private parties. It was the intention of the Santa Fe's officials to extend the road south and west and a survey was made, crossing the Frisco about seven miles east of Tulsa. Then the Frisco officials awakened to what was about to happen and began construction work from Sapulpa on its Red river division, which went over virtually the same territory the Santa Fe intended to reach. Therefore Owasso remained the terminus of the Santa Fe for several years.

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        After earnest solicitation for many years by Tulsa's business men to extend the line to Tulsa James Dunn, chief engineer of the Santa Fe, arrived in Tulsa late one afternoon in his private car. We made arrangements to drive over the proposed line between Tulsa and Owasso in a buggy. The Midland Valley had promised the Santa Fe that if it would extend to Tulsa it could use the M. V trackage and depot and Mr. Dunn had a talk with the M. V. engineer who was living in a tent near the depot at that time. Then he returned to his private car and the Tulsa business men thought he was returning to Chicago at once. But he hadn't. Next morning he was found standing before our bank. He said that during the night he had been thinking about trackage facilities and knew that the Santa Fe would wart its own. He wanted to get an option on a strip of ground 200 feet wide west of the Midland Valley property. The option was obtained and the Santa Fe named about $12,000 as the amount of bonus it would require. The bonus was raised and the first Santa Fe train came into Tulsa in 1905.
        The Arkansas Valley and Western railroad was Tulsa's last long line The promoter of this road asked a bonus for building it due west from Tulsa from a connection with the Frisco in West Tulsa but members of the Commercial club decided that it was his intention to start a town at the junction, where West Tulsa now stands, and refused the bonus. The road is now a branch of the Frisco, extending between Tulsa and Enid.


Photo Will Lynch
        It was 1892 when Will Lynch reached Tulsa from Arkansas. For some time he had a store in Dawson, where he was 

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