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Dave Yargee Family
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From the Dill Collection (newspaper clipping undated), courtesy of the Okfuskee County Historical Society.

Yargee Remembers When Okemah Had One Store

Dave Yargee

A 97-year-old Native American remembers when there was only one store in Okemah, and he says that a train coming into the station was one of the big events of the week.

Dave Yargee was born in 1893 in what became the town of Yeager, between Wewoka and Holdenville in Hughes County.  He said that the name of the town was supposed to be Yargee, but "some white man misspelled it". Yargee is not certain about some of the exact dates of events he remembers, but said he came to the Okemah area before there was a state or a town.

The reason Yargee came to this area was because his mother married a man who lived over here. He related that his father, Alexander Yargee, had fathered five children, all with different mothers, and commented, "My father, got around a lot."

Yargee said his father was shot and killed by a friend after they got into an argument. In his words, "They went in a wagon over to Little Rock, in Arkansas, and got some whiskey. They got to drinking it and arguing over whose it was and the man pulled out a pistol and shot my father and two other men who were there."

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