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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.
Personal Letters From A Few "Old Timers" (con't)
fifty years of service, as foreign missionary, and later as home missionary, was retiring, and I, a young man was called to take up the work.
The First Presbyterian church of Tulsa, was organized by Rev. William P. Haworth, who served it for 4 years, and Dr. Loughridge then took up the work, and now, it developed upon myself, a young man to follow on.
At the time the Home Mission Board appointments read, "Missionary to the above named Churches," and this work was missionary in the fullest sense of the term. Space will not permit of details.
The board at that time maintained Mission schools in both Tulsa and in Red Fork, and it was by the splendid cooperation of the Mission workers, and the faithful officers we had at both points, that the laying of the foundations for the greater things, that were yet to come was made possible.
After a little over two years of service here, the tragic death of our boy forced our removal, because of the condition of Mrs. Lamb's health from the terrible shock.
RALPH J. LAMB.
January 3rd, 1933
Came to Tulsa vicinity, from Benton County, Arkansas, in 1889. First on the Halsell ranch, and went from there to Colorado for about one year. Returned to Tulsa and worked for J. M. and H. C. Hall in store. Later J. J. Smith and myself opened a small grocery store in Tulsa, subsequently buying Smith out. R. E. and Wm. Lynch joining the firm, under the name of Lynch Mercantile Co. Married to Ella J. Tinnin, of Benton County, Arkansas, December 13, 1892. Still living in Tulsa. Have two sons, C. Hayden and James T. Lynch.
January 9, 1933
One cold rainy day in November 1889, two covered wagons wound their way over the hills and prairies toward the west. The Stansbery family and all their belongings were in those two wagons.
At this time the writer was eleven years old. After camping a few days on the banks of the Arkansas river we found there was a good school here run by the Presbyterian Home Missionary Society. Tulsa looked good to me, even at that time, and we decided to locate here. The writer attended the mission school for several years, as it was not made a public school until 1899.
At the age of sixteen I went to work for Lynch Brothers store as collector for a salary of $12.00 per month and board. After rounding up the farmers over the country for a while, Mr. Lynch decided he would have to put me in the store if I was to keep on living, as the farmers were about to get my scalp.
Four years later he sold out to the C. Gamble Mercantile Company and I went in with the invoice at a small figure.
By that time Tulsa was growing in population and real estate was increasing in value. I had accumulated enough money to buy some real estate and bought the property where the Santa Fe freight house now stands, paying $10.00 for the entire block, which cut my bank balance down considerably.
As I had invested in real estate in Tulsa, decided I had better get married and settle down. In 1900 I took myself a wife and also opened an implement and hardware business for myself. I sold the implement and hardware business twenty-five years later, but still have the same wife.
I have seen Tulsa grow from a small village with two or three stores and a blacksmith shop to a real city with the best water system and schools in the state of Oklahoma. When I came here in 1889 I realized I was nothing. After living here forty-three years I find I am twice as much.
I am proud to be one of the pioneers of Tulsa and am never too busy to visit with my good friends who were here in the early days.
Very truly yours,
LON R. STANSBERY.
January 6th, 1933.
I arrived in Tulsa in the autumn of 1898. 1 founded the Tulsa Democrat, now the Tribune. I have seen Tulsa history misquoted. I did not sell to Stryker, but to Dave Jesse. Col. Calkins was the first mayor of Tulsa and not Judge Poe, who was the second mayor.
When the Townsite Commission finished appraising the lots in Tulsa the valuation placed on most of them was a most inconsiderable sum.
Several years ago I was in Tulsa one night, and the late George Williamson came down to the hotel to visit with me. We took an hour's walk around the then
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