The First Eight Months of Oklahoma City.


On a little knoll, nestling amidst towering locusts, with the fragrant winds of autumn's fields and orchards playing upon its whitened walls, in the county of Brown and state of Illinois, stands the house around which cluster the sweetest memories in the life of William Hanwyn Ebey, where he was born on the 5th day of September, 1863. Mr. Eby spent his boyhood days In Illinois where he received a common school education. He began the study of law in Illinois and in 1884 came west to Kansas where he completed a course of reading in his brother's office at Wichita. He was a Kansas postmaster and editor during Cleveland's administration. Mr. Ebey has been prominent among the young Democracy of Kansas and is secretary of the Democratic congressional commit-tee of the Seventh congressional district of Kansas. He came to Oklahoma on the eventful 22nd, and is secretary of the Oklahoma City board of trade. He is the head of the firm of Ebey & Guthrie which is the leading real estate, loan and insurance firm in the city. Mr. Ebey is prominently identified with some of the leading enterprises of our city being a director and large stock holder In the water power, electric light and water works companies.


C. A. Galbraith, one of the youngest and foremost attorneys in the new territory, was born at Hartsville, Bartholomew county, Indiana, March 6th, 1860. His youth was passed in attending the public schools during the winter months and working on a farm in summer. At eighteen years of age he entered the freshman class of Hartsville College and graduated, taking the degree of A. B. in 1883. He was out of college two winters -one was spent in teaching a country school and the other as an attaché of the Indiana state senate. He was a law student in the office of Hon. Francis T. Herd, at Columbus, Indiana, and attended the Michigan University law school at Ann Arbor, Michigan during the session of '83 and '84. In the spring of '84 he located at Terrell, Texas, in law practice and in January '85 formed a partnership with Hon. J. O. Terrell which relation was sustained until July, '88 when Mr. Galbraith moved to Fort Worth, Texas, and continued in the practice of his profession until the siren voice of Oklahoma drew him to her borders. He arrived in Oklahoma City on the memorable 22d of April, '89, and in a few days afterwards opened a law office. He has

page 82

been identified with all the progressive moves of the city, is an active member of the board of trade and president of the Cleveland Democratic club which is the strongest political organization in the Territory. He has great executive ability and to him is the honor ascribed of calling to order the first Democratic territorial convention ever held in Oklahoma. He is a quiet man, handsome and pleasant, and has hosts of friends. On the 22d of December 1886, at Terrell, Texas, he was united in marriage to Miss Nova J. Harman, a handsome and talented young lady.


The first territorial political convention was that of the Republicans held in Oklahoma City, January 17th, 1890. There were over one hundred and fifty delegates in attendance and the convention was in session three days. Following are the names of the members of the central committee as appointed by the convention:

J. M. Canon, Frisco, chairman; A. C. Scott, Oklahoma City, secretary; Gee. H. Dodson, Orlando; E. J. Wilkoff, Stillwater; C. B. Freeman, Guthrie; Samuel Murphy, Oklahoma City; A. H. Classen, Edmond; D. W. Marquart, Norman; B. L. Eaten, Hennessey; D. B. Garrett, Lincoln; Frank Rector, Downs; I. Cutright, Frisco; E. E. Wilson, Reno City; Thomas Jensen, El Reno.

The second convention was Democratic and about the same number of delegates were in attendance as were at the Republican convention. It convened March 11th, 1890, and adjourned two days later. The central committee appointed is as follows:

President, J. E. Jones, Oklahoma City; secretary, T. E. Berry, Norman; Charles VanEaton, Dover; James Shears, Cimarron City; J. S. Mitsch, Edmond; P. Bar-nard, Downs; J. D. S. Chalmers, El Reno; T. E. Berry, Norman: J. G. Johnson, Noble; J. J. Kirwin, Britton; W. E. Banks, Mustang; George E. Clayton, Seward; J. R. Booth, Matthewson; P. R. Smith, Lexington; J. W. Crider, Hennessey; T. G. Sutton, Frisco; C. M. Burke, Central City; A. J. Day, Choctaw City; Allen Carruthes and L. Ketchum, Guthrie. D. B. Madden and J. E. Jones, Oklahoma City; E. J. Simpson, Reno City; A. J. Shaw, Union City; J. M. Kuykendal, Orlando; P. Nagle, Kingfisher, Col. Hugh Wilkinson, Oklahoma City, and Virgil M. Hobbs, Kingfisher, delegates at large.

page 83


Hon. Lewis Countryman, of the law firm of Weaver Clarke & Countryman, was among the first who reached Oklahoma City on the afternoon of April 22, 1889. He was born at Cleveland, Ohio, February 27th, 1837. In 1884 he went with his parents to Rock county, Wisconsin, where he learned the mill wright trade with his father and followed that trade up to the year 1865. In 1854 he moved to West Union, Iowa, and in 1861 he crossed the plains to Marysville, California, remaining there until July 1869, when he went to Washal City, Nevada. He left Nevada in October 1865, returning to the states via the Isthmus of Panama. He engaged at once in farming and stock business at Cedar Rapids and at Woodbury county, Iowa, and was soon known as one of the leading business men of that portion of the state. About this time he commenced to investigate the fraudulent land grants in Western, Iowa, and after being admitted to the bar entered upon the land practice as the representative of the settlers. He was eminently successful both in the Iowa courts and at Washington, recovering nearly 30,000 acres of valuable land. Mr. Countryman has given great attention to land contest cases in Oklahoma. Having been interested for many years in the movement to open this country to settlement, and having had much experience in energetic, western life, Mr. Countryman is just the man to aid in utilizing the resources of a new territory and in laying the foundation of a new state.


When Congressman Mansur, of Missouri; Springer, of Illinois; Allen, of Mississippi; Perkins and Peters of Kansas, and Baker of New York, notified the citizens of Oklahoma that they would visit them on Tuesday, September 17, there was a great stir made to prepare a suitable reception for the distinguished gentlemen.

A barbeque was prepared, platforms erected in the grove north-east of the city, and everything done that would create a favorable impression on the minds of the statesmen. They arrived as advertised and after being driven over the city were escorted to the grove where each congressman was introduced according to rank. Their speeches were, it was presumed, the same ones that they

page 84

had delivered at other points along the route, yet the assembled thousands applauded them to the echo. Allen was the funny man of the party and it is said that he slightly strained himself on the "swing around the circle." They all solemnly promised that the territory should have speedy legislation.

At night a banquet and ball was given in their honor. It was a spread eagle affair and the remembrance of it will be cherished by many of the citizens of the city forever. The GAZETTE Of September 18th, spoke of it thusly:

"The most brilliant display of beauty and fashion ever witnessed in the great south west was that of last night at the banquet and ball tendered the congressional visitors. The blending of beautiful colors, the gleam of fair white arms, the bright rays of light sent out by the jewels, the joy and spirituelle combination of tulle and flowers, the shimmer of silks and the splendor of brocades made a picture bright and dazzling with color and variety.

Diamonds blazed from the hair, the neck and the front of the gowns of Oklahoma's beautiful women who charmed and enthralled the great statesmen who came to visit us and inspect our Utopian progress and advancement towards the legislative light of territorial government and future statehood.

The banquet was a most happy and glorious success. The caterer, Mr. W. S. Cotter, from the metropolis of Sunflowerdom, managed and arranged everything with such consummate ability and artistic grace that everybody was delighted and charmed. The crowd was so great that the tables were set twice before all could be feasted. The first spread was for fifty couples and the second embraced a like number. It was a royal festal board and the joyous assemblage acted upon the scriptural injunction, "Eat, drink and be merry, for to-morrow you may die."

At the ball the best music obtainable was furnished - the Oklahoma orchestra, under Prof. Blite - and nothing was left undone to make the occasion harmonious and glorious. Everybody that could, danced, and to those who did not there was a charm in the spectacle presented by the well dressed gentlemen and handsome women who did dance and endeavored to help make up the prettiest of pictures-the mazy waltz, the vivacious gallop and the stately quadrille.

Oklahoma City's reception to the distinguished visit-ors was a blaze of glory and a poem of color and beauty. There was no friction or restraint and it was in short the acme of superbness.

page 85

One hundred gentlemen in full dress, officers of the army in the neatest of tight fitting uniforms, one hundred ladies in the luster and glory of magnificent silks, satins, foamy laces set off with plumes and starlike jewels glistening through the clouds of draperies, all in graceful motion to the time of tuneful music made a scene of brilliant kaleidoscopic beauty never before witnessed in the history of the country that rivals the Biblical Bulah Land of corn and wine.

Mrs. Dr. Munger, a handsome woman, was attired in a dress of drab cashmere, white lace, tinsel braid, tan gloves, diamonds.

Mrs. Ben Craycroft, gown of flowered silk-square bodice, exquisitely made.

Miss Murphy, attired in an elegant gown of Henrietta cloth trimmed with blue velvet, Marshalniel roses in cor-sage, belt of blue velvet, no gloves.

Miss Cobin, brown silk dress trimmed with old gold lace, no gloves or flowers.

Miss Kate Ellis, black faille silk with ribbons to match, decollette, apple blossoms in corsage.

Miss Stead, elegant gown of wine colored cashmere trimmed with ribbons, white flowers in hair and corsage; diamonds.

Mrs. Boyle, dress of blue Henrietta trimmed in silk braid, pink lace bonnet to match and pink wrap.

Miss Fitch, gown of light brown cloth, trimmed with velvet, drab gloves, no flowers.

Miss Scott, exquisitely attired in dark blue silk, trimmed with watered silk and ribbons to match.

Miss Cora Wall, striped black and white cloth gown trimmed with ribbons to match.

Miss May Ellis, suit of grey Henrietta, trimmed with red velvet decollette, white flowers in corsage.

Mrs. Percival wore a dress of black faille Francaise, draped with black lace, long black gloves, boquet of roses.

Mrs. Blackburn, dress of black royal armure of simple but elegant make, beautiful boquet of English roses, long black gloves.

Miss Spruce was attired in a gown of a beautiful shade of cashmere trimmed with plaid silk and pink ribbons.

Mrs. George Sisson wore an exquisite gown of black satin luxor, elegant trimmings, long tan gloves, diamonds.

Mrs. Eltermann, gown of lovely plush, a pretty blue shade, pink flowers, long drab gloves.

Mrs. Wedemeyer, wine colored silk with velvet polonaise, pink flowers, tan gloves and diamonds.

Miss Massey wore dress of white Swiss trimmed with pink, rose buds in corsage, white surah sash, silk mitts.

page 86

Mrs. Massey was attired in an elaborately made combination suit trimmed with brocaded silk, pink flowers, long black gloves.

Mrs. Vaughn, black satin luxor trimmed with olive green silk, long black gloves.

Miss A. C. Robb wore a beautiful dress of black silk, jet ornaments, white flowers, diamonds.

Mrs. J. H. Woods was arrayed in a lovely black silk trimmed with velvet and dutchess lace; diamonds.

Miss Mattie Hope wore a pretty gown of surah rep trimmed with black velvet, white flowers, diamonds.

Mrs. Geffs was attired in an elaborately trimmed white faille Swiss, white flowers, long white gloves, diamonds .

Mrs. Sampey, lovely dress of wine colored silk trimmed with brocaded velvet. long black gloves; corsage flowers.

Mrs. Scott was dressed in an elegantly made brown satin gown, white flowers.

Mrs. Sommers, brown silk, white satin ribbons, long tan gloves, boquet of Oklahoma flowers.

Mrs. T. A. Cook was dressed in a tasty gown of black and blue velvet trimmed with Spanish lace, shoulder ornaments, tan gloves.

Miss Pugh, white faille Swiss trimmed with blue satin ribbons, long sash of same, white flowers.

Miss Davis wore a black silk, passamenterie trimmings, Spanish lace, diamonds.

Mrs. McGee was attired in black armure beautifully made, long black gloves, corsage flowers, diamonds.

Mrs. Grannahan wore a light brown dress of cashmere tastefully made, long tan gloves.

Miss Robinson, lovely black armure, trimmed in black satin ribbon.

Miss Kramer wore a pretty embroidered gown of white Swiss, long black gloves.

Miss Cuppy, embroidered white skirt, wine colored silk basque, long tan gloves.

Miss Odie Detwiler wore an exquisite dress of black armure with trimmings to match.

Miss Minnie Detwiler, was attired in a gown of black cashmere, jet ornaments, white rose buds in hair and corsage.

Mrs. Gen. Cramer wore a beautiful silk gown - flowered - trimmed with lace and silk velvet hat to match, with large white plume. Long maroon gloves, diamonds. 

page 87

Misses Lulu Johnson and Mable Garrison were attractively dressed in gowns of cream wool, girlish style, full skirt, with bands of satin ribbon and sashes of same, pink flowers.

Mrs. Winsett wore a dress of black armure trimmed with black satin, boquet of natural flowers.

Miss Etta Ray, costume of white Swiss trimmed with satin ribbons, decollette.

Mrs. Guthrie was attractively attired in a lovely dress of olive plush with cream silk trimmings, diamond broach and solitaire ear rings.

Miss Nellie Bourne wore an elegant dress of white mull very gracefully draped.

Miss Annie Hazen, cream silk mull, long white gloves, flowers.

Miss Alla Winsett, cream wool trimmed with satin ribbons, decollette, white flowers.

Miss Neva Ray, white mull trimmed with ribbons, boquet of flowers.

Miss Alice Garrison, cream sateen exquisitely made, flowers.