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DEAR DESCENDANTS
THE OIL BOOM
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FAMILY MEMBER KENNETH BROOKS
FAMILY MEMBER ROZELLAH PETTY BROOKS
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FAMILY MEMBER WILLIAM HENRY BROOKS
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FAMILY MEMBER EVA HANING BROOKS
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FAMILY MEMBER ANDREW JACKSON PETTY
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GETTING GRANNY'S GOAT
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THE OIL BOOM
RESEARCHING MY FAMILY HISTORY
RESEARCHING MY FAMILY HISTORY, PAGE 2
ABOUT ME
FUTURE HEIRLOOMS

No one living in Oklahoma in the early 1900s was completely unaffected by the oil boom. On this page I will publish some anecdotes about the oil industry and its effect on our family.

HISTORY OF THE OIL BOOM

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When oil was discovered in Oklahoma, much of it was on land belonging to the Osage tribe. Members of that tribe shared the wealth and became the richest people in the world.

As I mention in the story to the right, the discovery of oil brought prosperity in varying degrees to everyone who lived in Oklahoma. My great-great uncle Frank Davis (Benjamin Franklin Davis) was the only family member I know of who actually owned oil-rich land. He bought a lot of land around Wewoka and hired family members to work farms for him. He also bought, or had built, a house for his mother Lucinda Hawk Davis.

My grandparents owned land near Cromwell and it is said that farms all around them were sprouting oil wells. Apparently the family did not live on their farm at the time. I have been told that Charlie Malone, husband of my grandmother's sister Cleo, told my father that an oil company had drilled fifty feet from the Brooks farm and were offering a fabulous sum for the farm. By the time Grandpa Brooks had received the message and found the oil company officials, the offer had been withdrawn. Why? I don't know but my best guess is that the drilling on the neighboring farm had resulted in a dry hole.

CENTENARIANS (new content August 2002)

In accordance with a law passed by the Oklahoma Legislature in 1935, the Capitol grounds have been leased for oil and gas production. Less than a dozen derricks are now on the grounds, some of the wells not now operating but maintained as tourist attractions. Once, two dozen oil wells formed a ring around the State Capitol.


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HOLD ONTO THE BUTTER!!!

Early in the twentieth century, an oil boom brought prosperity to Oklahoma. Even people who did not have oil wells on their land benefitted by the boom. Farm wives like my grandmother, for instance, were paid well for the butter and eggs they sold in town.

One day Grandma loaded the farm wagon with produce to sell and commanded her children to get into the wagon, the three boys in the back and the little girl up front, holding a tub of butter in her lap. Grandma headed the wagon toward town with high hopes of making a lot of money. For some reason (my guess is being frightened by a newfangled and very noisy automobile) the horses bolted. Little Kathelene must have feared for her life, but Grandma thought only of the money she might lose if she couldn't get her butter to town. While desperately trying to control her runaway team, Grandma yelled, "Hold onto the butter, Kathelene!"

Even in adulthood, Kathelene's brothers continued to tease her with that phrase. Every time the family got together they would all laugh and yell, "Hold onto the butter, Kathelene!"

NOTE TO MY DEAR DESCENDANTS

Let the amusing story above be a lesson to you. Whatever is valuable in your life, hold onto it. Even if it doesn't look valuable to anyone but you, hold onto it. I think of the many things my "packrat" mother held onto and no one even knew she had until after she died. Because she held onto them, I now have a lot of things to share with you on the site. If that information is valuable to you, find a way to preserve it. You might copy the web pages or make notes of the information you want to keep. Remember, cyberlife is as uncertain as the other kind. You don't know how long this site will be available.

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