Updates from The Prairie Project

   So last week I made good on my decision to start looking around my own back yard for fascinating history tid bits, and I’ve been pleasantly surprised with all that I’ve found (and remembered!) and the wonderful response on Instagram. If you’d like to see all the #prairieproject posts, your best bet is to go through my instagram (you can see the pics on the left sidebar as they get loaded) but I thought I’d share some highlights here:

The grave of “Chief” Sapulpa, the Creek Indian man who settled in this area after the Creeks were removed from Alabama. He and his family are buried in this simple cemetery nearly hidden among 1970s development.

    My Great-great grandma Lula Mae, an Indian Territory beauty, who lost her first husband (and father of her son, Jesse, my great-Grandfather) but found love again with a local businessman who’s name still graces the building of his mattress factory.

   Robbie and I visit a friend’s tame buffalo at her farm out near Beggs, Oklahoma. I can now say I’ve received sloppy buffalo kisses (anyone have some hand sanitizer?)

  What the oil boom looked like here in Oklahoma about 1910. This is when one side of my family came here— looking for their wealth in oil. We’re still lookin!

    My modern day downtown takes on a look of the past when put into black and white

    It’s been a fun project for sure. It’s also made me more aware of the fact that people just dont learn about the history of many of our states— we learn to about the Revolutionary War, perhaps the Civil War, but things like the Western Migration, the promise and pitfalls of ‘manifest destiny’, the fate of the Native Americans as their land was taken piece by piece….these are all the stories that lurk within many of our pasts.

   I am a lover of history, and story above all. I love that we all have a ‘story.’ Every place has a story. And they don’t have to be forgotten 🙂

  May you stumble upon some intriguing and wonderful stories for 2015— can’t believe January is almost over!!!
  Happy Weekend!~

7 thoughts on “Updates from The Prairie Project

  1. I have been following along your instagram photos of the Prairie Project and loving all of the history that you have shared! It is quite fascinating and an equally important story to share and tell over and over. You have inspired me to look at little closer around here and revisit our historical areas. Florida was a frequent destination in the late 1800s for northern people to escape the harsh winters. With lots of timber available, railroads were built to ship wood out and build homes. Florida was first visited in the late 1500s by Ponce de Leon looking for the fountain of youth and spoils for Spain and set up St. Augustine along the Atlantic Coast. But Malaria and Yellow Fever wiped out more than one early colony. Did I ever mention that we say the state bird is the mosquito? In this tropical environment, those little buggers are still here spreading diseases like West Nile Virus and Equine encephalitis. Just following the trends of mosquitoes down here is history in and of itself!! LOL!!


  2. Heather, what a small world – I grew up in Sapulpa! Are we both alums of SHS? I was in the class of '88.Just this Thanksgiving we made a road trip home and also photographed the grave of Chief Sapulpa and the downtown stretch. My childhood best friend's parents owned what was once Bell Drug and I spent many happy hours hanging out with her on Dewey Ave. Some of my photos are in this blog post: http://pinewoodcastle.typepad.com/my_weblog/2014/12/over-the-rivers.htmlAs someone interested in art, the Church, and history, you may enjoy learning about my great-great uncle Fr. Robert Gregory Gerrer – http://www.mgmoa.org/about-mgmoa/father-gerrer/I will definitely look you up on Instagram!


  3. This is so so fascinating! I have really been enjoying the prairie project posts on Instagram. I love local history. It is something I primarily study in my history degree and it's so nice to see people with a passion for it!


  4. Have seen your FB posts, but will take a look through Instagram as well. My interest in history waxes and wanes, sorry to say…I was recently surprised to learn of Irish slaves. Now that I live in Alabama, your reference to the native Creeks caught my eye and I'll have to Google for more info. Thanks for sharing.


  5. I really enjoyed this post Heather. And it's the same here … I live in a village that is dripping with history, much of it noteworthy, but few of the people I meet seem to know about half of what has happened here in the past.


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