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Indian Pioneer Papers - Index

Indian Pioneer History Project for Oklahoma
Date: July 12, 1937
Name: Mr. G. P. Rollow
Post Office: Wynnewood, Oklahoma
Residence Address:  
Date of Birth: 1865
Place of Birth:  Tennessee
Father:   Johna Rollow
Place of Birth:  Tennessee
Information on father:
Mother:   Rebecca Kay
Place of birth:   Tennessee
Information on mother:
Field Worker:  Maurice R. Anderson
Interview #: 4811

Story told by Mr. G. P. Rollow, born in 1865 in Tennessee.

I came to the Indian Territory in 1898 and settled at Wynnewood in the Chickasaw nation and went into the retail business for myself. Wynnewood at that time was a trading place. People from as far as Stonewall traded with us.

People around Wynnewood at that time were very religious. There was a Baptist Church and a Methodist Church at Wynnewood and on Sundays both of these churches would be full of people.

This was a very beautiful country back in 1898. the prairies would be covered with flowers and the woods were full of wild plums and grapes.

I dealt in real estate some. Land that sold then for thirty dollars an acre is today worth a hundred and fifty per acre. I have raised a bale of cotton to the acre off of this river bottom land and corn would make from seventy five to a hundred bushels to the acre and we did not half farm it.

I remember when I came here you could buy dressed turkeys for fifty cents a turkey and frying chickens for one dollar a dozen. Corn was fifteen cents a bushel and oats ten cents a bushel.

I have talked to old settlers living around Wynnewood and have been told that Wynnewood was built on Indian land belonging to Mrs. R.W. Jennings. Wynnewood got its name from two men named Wynne and Wood, who were surveying engineers and who surveyed the right of way for the Santa Fe Railroad through here. Wynnewood was surveyed and named in 1887. 

W.C. Lee was the first Mayor of Wynnewood and C.E. Austy was the first City Marshal. J.H. Walner was the first merchant, having moved his store from old Cherokee Town after the railroad came through here. Dr. A.P. Ryan was the first practicing physician. Joe Walker was the first hotel proprietor and the Pioneer Church Society was the Methodist Episcopal Church South. Reverend A.N. Everett was the pastor and David Anstine of Illinois and Miss Allie Kizer were the first couple married in Wynnewood. The first births were twins born to Mr. and Mrs. D.C. Clark. Both babies died and were the first to be buried in the Wynnewood Cemetery. Mr. Harry Keiser became Wynnewood's first post master. Mrs. M.S. Hotchkiss was the first school teacher at Wynnewood.

I am now in the real estate business at Wynnewood where I have been since 1898.

Transcribed for OKGenWeb by Brenda Choate.