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Garvin County

County Seat - Pauls Valley

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OKGenWeb Indian Pioneer Papers Collection


Garvin County Indian Pioneer Papers



John McManus


Interview #10389
Field Worker: Maurice R. Anderson
Date: March 28, 1938
Name:   Mr. John McManus
Residence: Wynnewood, Oklahoma
Date of Birth:  December 6, 1875
Place of Birth:  Texas
Father:  J.C. McManus, born in Missouri
Mother: Mary Nolan, born in Missouri 


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I was born in 1875, in Texas, from which state I came to the Indian Territory in 1898, in a wagon.  I settled at Wynnewood, in the Chickasaw Nation and rented a small farm from Noah Lael, who at that time was a large cattle owner.

Wynnewood and Pauls Valley at that time were the only two trading points in this part of the country.  There were no roads over the country then to speak of and very few schools and churches.

Northeast of Wynnewood about five or six miles was a Negro Mission, that had been founded by a Negro named Dixie Smith, in 1895, according to men who lived here then.  This mission stood until about 1917 when it was wrecked by a storm, and never was built back.  There was a subscription school at Wynnewood for white children.  

People didn't raise as much cotton then, as they do now  a-days.   Corn was the main crop as there was a ready market for corn and it didn't take much work to raise a large crop of corn.  The cattlemen would buy all the corn to feed out to their beef steers.  There was a feeding pen across the river from where old Cherokee Town used to be. 

After the railroad came through this country, old Cherokee Town was moved to Wynnewood, or at least a part of it was.  One of the buildings was moved to Pauls Valley.

There were lots of wild game then.  I went to the mountains south of old Fort Arbuckle and killed a deer every winter for several winters after settling here.  

The first year I lived in the Indian Territory, I had to pay a $5.00 permit to live in this country.  That was the only time I ever had to pay.

I have lived in and around Wynnewood since 1898.


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