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Garvin County

County Seat - Pauls Valley

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OKGenWeb Indian Pioneer Papers Collection


Garvin County Indian Pioneer Papers



Jim F. Davis


Interview #1242
Field Worker: Maurice R. Anderson
Date: April 28, 1937
Name:   Mr. Jim F. Davis
Residence: Pauls Valley, Oklahoma
Date of Birth:  1880
Place of Birth: Tennessee
Father: Alfred Davis, born in Tennessee
Mother: Nancy Mitchell, born in Tennessee 


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Mr. Jim F. Davis was born in Tennessee, in 1880.

I came to the Indian Territory, Chickasaw Nation, when I was eighteen years old.  I was with Mr. Baker, and he settled on Rush Creek, west of Pauls Valley, in 1898.  Mr. Baker was nick-named 'Rush Creek Baker'.  He rented a farm from Moman Pruitt, who was a lawyer at that time. 

Mr. Baker and I had a little trouble and I went to work for Mr. Sam Garvin, who owned a large ranch.  His brand was the Coffee Pot brand.  I was paid twenty-five dollars a month and my board.  There were about fifteen men working for Mr. Garvin at that time, on his ranch.

There wasn't much cattle stealing then, but our main trouble was the wolves.  Many a cold rainy night I have stayed out until two o'clock in the morning bringing in a cow and young calf.  I couldn't leave the cow and calf as I knew if I did the wolves would kill the calf.  It takes a long time to drive a cow and young calf from fifteen to twenty miles. 

Mr. Garvin and Mr. Burk had under their control the range from Pauls Valley to Story and near Elmore City.  There were other brands on this range belonging to different ranches, but at roundup time, we had our hardest work picking out the Coffee Pot brand.

I have hauled cottonseed out on the prairie by wagon loads and dumped them out for the cattle.  Cottonseed wasn't worth ten cents a bushel. 

It was no trouble to get a job of work, if you wanted to work.   Groceries were cheap, and after I went to farming for myself, I have sold fryers for fifteen cents each.  I have sold good milch cows, giving from four to five gallons of milk a day for twenty-five dollars.  Fat hogs brought three cents a pound on foot.

When I came to Pauls Valley, land was cheap, and I could have bought a five acre tract and a three-room house where the ball park is today, for one hundred dollars.  The river bottom land could be bought then, for ten dollars an acre.

I have seen more corn left in the fields when I came here than was raised last year.

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