Coodys Bluff
Nowata Co., Oklahoma

Long before Oklahoma received its Statehood in 1907, it was in 1803 The United State acquired most of the area known as Oklahoma as part of the Louisiana Purchase.
Before 1800 a group of Cherokee Peope moved west and begun to settle the Arkansas, on the White and St. Francis rivers.

1812 Most of Oklahoma became part of the Missouri Territory

1817 According to the terms of a treaty with the United States, the Cherokee people were assigned a country in Arkansas and from that time were known as the Western Cherokees.

1819 Most of Oklahoma became part of the Arkansas Territory

1828 Sequoyah was one of the Western Cherokee delegates to Washington, D. C., who signed a new treaty. They traded their Arkansas lands for a country in the Indian Territory, north of the Arkansas and Canadian rivers, Northeastern Oklahoma today.

1828/1829 Cherokee and Choctaw moved voluntarily from Cherokee Nation East to Cherokee Nation West. These are known as "Old Settlers"

This is when the Coody family arrived, making their home which even today is known as Coody's Bluff. "OLD SETTLERS"

1829 Dwight Mission School had been established by missionaries of the American Board of Boston among the Western Cherokee in Arkansas Territory.

1838-1839 The forced removal of the Cherokee People over the Trail of Tears. At which time Eight of the Nine Cherokee Districts were formed; Flint, Going Snake, Delaware, Sequoyah, Illinois, Canadian, Saline and Tahlequah. Nowata County today was in the Western part of the Saline District.

The "California Trails" passed through Coody's Bluff which is immediately east of Nowata on west side of the Verdigris River.

1844 The Cherokee Advocate was first published at Tahlequah, this was the first newspaper in Oklahoma.

1856 Cooweescoowee District was formed from the Western Part of Saline District. Nowata County, was in the Cooweescoowee District.

1860 Coodys Bluff, Cooweeescoowee District, Cherokee Nation West, six miles East of Nowata started it's first Post Office May 5, 1860. The first Postmaster of Coody's Bluff was Richard Coody.

Post Offices and Postmasters - - -Coodys Bluff

Richard Coody 1860
John Thompson 1874
Henry Armstrong 1879
Oscar Allison 1910
Robert Lamar 1912
Lula Reinheardt 1916
Vera Brown 1919
Dora Sibley 1920

1861 A detachment of Colonel Drew's Cherokee regiment, about 500 strong, was posted at Coody's Bluff in the western part of the Cherokee Nation; and after Pike's departure for Richmond, Cooper, as senior colonel, assumed command of the troops in the Indian Territory and organized his forces to cope with Opothleyoholo and the loyal Creeks

1867 Both the Delaware and the Shawnee people sold their land granted in Kansas and purchased an interest in the Cherokee lands. Many settled in the Cooweescoowee District Cherokee Nation West.

1870 Coodys Bluff 1st Log Cabin School

1871 At twelve o'clock noon, June 6, 1871 the Missouri, Kansas and Texas Railway Company won the race by completing its track to the northern boundary of Indian Territory, in the valley of the Neosho River. On the following July 20, 1871, President Grant authorized the company to enter the Indian Territory and construct tracks to the Red River and on into Texas.

1871 In the late autumn of 1871, the Atlantic and Pacific Railroad Company, the second railroad company to enter into Indian Territory, built tracks from Seneca Missouri to Vinita. The Atlantic & Pacific Railroad was later sold and became the St. Louis & San Francisco Railroad.

1884 The Dwight Mission Schools had been closed during the Civil War, it was reopened.

1890-1892 One cave very important to the Dalton Gang was under a cliff of rock on the east bank of the Verdigris River about 1 mile north of the river bridge on Highway 60. The only entrance to the cave was to swim horses from the west bank of the river to the mouth of the cave on the other side. The members of the Dalton Gang were from the Coodys Bluff community. Bill Rattlingourd and Bitter Creek Newcomb. The U. S. Government blasted the cave in 1892. Another of their hideouts was around Taylor Cemetery little over 2 miles southwest of Nowata, where it has been said their names are carved in rock.

1893 March the U. S. Congress appointed, what was known as "THE DAWES COMMISSION." This commission consisted of three members to meet the people of the Five Civilized Tribes and the officers of their governments and to make new agreements concerning their affairs.
1. That Indian title to lands be given up
2. For abandonment of the Indian Governments
3. For adjustment of Indian affairs to prepare the Indian Territory for admission into the Union
4. And for the allotment of land in severalty, which meant that a certain amount of land was to be allowed each member of the Five Civilized Tribes.
The chairman and principal member was Henry L. Dawes. The other two gentlemen were Meredith H. Kidd of Indiana and Archibald S. McKennon of Arkansas.
The Dawes Commission had a very important place in the history of Oklahoma for a period of twelve years.
Frank C. Armstrong also served as a member, was from Washington D.C., son of Francis Armstrong, superintendent of the removal of the Indians to the Indian Territory in 1831-1835.

1897 Tams Bixby of Minnesota, was also a member of the Dawes Commission.

1903 Tams Bixby served as chairman of the Dawes Commission from 1903 to the end of the commission.

1904 "The City of Nowata owes her sudden and continued growth largely to the development of the oil fields in the territory adjacent. The Alluwe field in November, 1904, was the first field opened, followed by the Coody's Bluff field about a year later, and then the Childers and Hogshooter's fields about 1906. All of these proving to be rich fields. Nowata County, Oklahoma, history from John D. Benedict book 1922

July 1, 1905 The end of "The Dawes Commission."

The little crossroads grocery store and post office at Coody's Bluff stood five miles east of Nowata, at the intersection of highway 60 and 28. Mr. and Mrs. Richard Roba Briggs operated a small grocery business there during the thirties. They were forced out of business by peoples inability to pay their bills during the depression. Mr. Richard Briggs worked in several grocery stores in Nowata, until in 1940, George Stanfill stocked the Coody's Bluff store again, as a joint operation with Briggs. Mr. and Mrs. Richard Briggs would run the country store, while the Stanfills continued with their Nowata store. Later, the Coody's Bluff post office was moved there, with Briggs as Post Master. Mrs. Briggs was his assistant. He held this post until he retired at the age of 70. Ruth Setzer obtained the Post Master potion, and the Briggs's continued with the store.
Richard Roba Briggs bought out George Stanfill's part in the business in the forty's and I am sure many people can identify with this little corner, as it provided groceries, gasoline, mail service, and a visiting place for a number of years. The Briggs's weren't newcomers to that area, as they operated a store in the old Henry Armstrong building half a mile north of Coody's Bluff for a few years.
Submitted by: Allene Briggs Stevens & Judy Stevens Gerken. You can read all of Allene Briggs Stevens “Looking Back” by clicking on this link. Looking Back
which now has one 1941 Flood Photo, courtesy of Judy Stevens Gerken.


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