Field Worker: Maurice R. Anderson
Date: January 25, 1938
Name: Mr. R.E. George
Residence: Pauls Valley, Oklahoma
Date of Birth: June 3, 1870
Place of Birth: Texas
Father: D.C. George, born in Missouri
Mother: Mary Willis, born in Missouri
I was born in 1870, in Texas, and came to the Indian Territory with my
father to make the Run in 1889. We came from Texas in a wagon drawn
by two mules.
Just before the Run started my father unhooked one of the
mules and rode it. We had intended to make the Run in our
wagon but Father decided we wouldn't get any place in a wagon. The Run
was made some time in April, and at twelve o'clock noon there were people from nearly
every place it seemed, they were in buggies, hacks, wagons, horseback and on foot.
My father staked a claim but sold it to another man and without filing on
it, we started back to Texas. On our way back we met a man at Wynnewood
and Father leased some farming land from him. This man had owned the first store in
Wynnewood in 1887 and before moving his store to Wynnewood he owned the
store at Cherokee Town.
We crossed the river at Cherokee Town on our way to make
the Run and when we came back there wasn't anything to speak of at Cherokee
Town. The railroad which had been built through this country in 1886 had missed Cherokee
Town and the town of Wynnewood had been started. Then Cherokee
Town was moved to Wynnewood, which was only a few miles south of
Not any of this land that Father leased from Mr. Walner
was in cultivation. Father got all he raised from this land for five years for
clearing it up and putting it in cultivation. There was no house on the land.
We lived in a dugout the first two years we were here. After making a deal
for the land we went to Texas and moved what things we had to Wynnewood.
Mother and sister stayed at Mr. W.M. Rays' home until we finished
our half-dugout, which took us only about a week to dig and build what to be our home,
with the help of Negro men living in that part of the country.
There was not very many white people living there at that time, but there
were quite a number of Negroes.
The first year we only cleared up about ten acres for corn. there
was plenty of wild game then and we raised quite a number of cattle. while we lived
there, a Negro named Dixie Smith traded my father five yearlings for a
mule. That was how we came to start dealing in cattle.
It was in 1893 that we raised our first large crop of cotton. We
made twelve bales of cotton and only had in twenty acres.
In 1895 Dixie Smith and a few other Negroes built a Negro
school, the first Negro school in that part of the country. My father helped work on
this school building and was paid by Dixie Smith.
We moved back to Texas in 1897 and my father and mother
died in Texas. I came back to Oklahoma in 1916 and have lived here since.