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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 65

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Will Lynch (con't)

interested in the coal mines, an interest he still maintains though he lives in Tulsa where he has been in the real estate business for many years.
        He has given considerable time to the advancement of the fraternal organizations he joined in Tulsa, particularly to the Masonic order. When he married he married a Tulsa girl, in 1895, and, like Will Rogers, he has been living with the same wife ever since. They have two sons and a daughter. One of the sons is unmarried. The Lynch family home is at 2028 E. Fourteenth Street.

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        About 18 Tulsa citizens secured a franchise to operate the first street railway in Tulsa. The men were not experienced in this and the terms of the franchise were harsh but the city council would not relent. C. H. Bosler, a streetcar man from Dayton, Ohio, came to Tulsa and the business men were glad to turn the franchise over to him, He went before the council and won several changes in the permit. He was to begin laying track within 60 days. On Main street, near First street, he placed two rails and covered them with dirt. They lay there some time before actual construction was started.
        When the Lynch-Forsythe and the Gillette-Hall additions to the east side of Tulsa were opened their owners began negotiations with the street car company for an extension of the line. It was agreed they would pay the company $10,000 and 15 percent of all money received from the sale of the lots. The $10,000 was paid and when the time for the extension had just about expired no service had been started. Then the rails were laid hurriedly and a car purchased in Muskogee. Two horses were hitched to it and a round trip was made, in this way the Street car company complied with the contract. The citizens of the Kendall college section paid the company $7,000 to go through that addition with the line. The first Main street cars began running in 1907 while the east side line was in service the same year.

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        The University of Tulsa had its beginning as a missionary school at Muskogee under the support of the home missionary board of the Presbyterian church in New York City.
       In 1894 it was given the name of Henry Kendall College in honor of Rev. Henry Kendall who, for 30 years, had been secretary of the home mission board.
       Later the members of the board and synod desired to locate the school elsewhere, where it would receive more financial support and be more centrally located and cities were solicited to make bids for it.

Many of the towns made offers, including Muskogee. The proposition from Tulsa was far better than that received from any other place and the school was moved here in 1907.
       Two real estate men who owned land east of Tulsa offered to give the college 20 acres of ground for a building site and campus and 300 lots if the school would be built on this property. The proposition was accepted and the sale of the 300 lots began at once. Most of these were sold on time payments and for $300. But it was a difficult job to collect and some of the lots had to be resold.

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        In the contract with the real estate men the trustees of the college were to have a certain amount of money invested in improvements within a specified time. The real estate men had drilled and found gas near Lewis avenue and had agreed to furnish gas for the college at 10 cents per thousand cubic feet. This was also written into the contract.
       At one time it appeared certain that the trustees could not live up to their obligations, and would lose all the property. But at the same time the gas wells were exhausted so the real estate men had to default on one section of the contract, too, and, in the end, they agreed to an extension of time if the trustees would wipe out the gas contract. That saved the University for Tulsa.
       The contract for the erection of the main auditorium and for Robertson Hall was let to J. W. Van Horn. This gentleman will always be remembered by some of the trustees for his leniency and patience in waiting for his money. When he wanted to pay his men and the trustees did not have the money, he would say, "Well, I will carry it over."
       When the two buildings were completed the trustees were owing $20,000. This amount was borrowed, secured by a mortgage and the endorsement of three men. Later the synod of the Presbyterian church of Oklahoma took the college over, issued bonds which were taken up principally by the business men, and paid the debt. Three men borrowed $2,000 and bought 10 acres south of the campus

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