The first white man to explore what is now Oklahoma was the Spainard Francisco Coronado in 1541. More than 140 years later La Salle claimed the area as part of French Louisiana. Most of the present state passed to the United States with the Louisiana Purchase of 1803. The long, narrow Panhandle was sold to the United States by Texas in 1850. In 1830 Congress passed the Indian Removal Act to relocate Native Americans from the Southeast into the Indian Territory. To prepare for the move, Forts Gibson and Townson had been built in 1824. The Five Civilized Tribes took the lead in establishing farms and engaging in trade. In 1852 Tahlequah was founded under Cherokee law to become the first incorporated town in the territory.
During the American Civil War the Five Civilized Tribes fought on both sides, the federal government used this as an excuse to force them to surrender the western half of their lands. The pressure to open the Indian Territory for white pioneers gradually increased even before the Civil War, and the federal government saw this as an opportunity to acquire this land for white settlement. The southern states lost none of their land owned by whites.
Finally Congress purchased from the Indian Nation a tract of 2 million acres (810,000 hectares) for farming in the central part of present Oklahoma. These monies were to be transfered to the tresurery of the Nations, but it took several years for the federal government to pay. Meanwhile, yet another plan was devised to acquire Indian Land, it was the Allotment. To increase the amount of land for settlers, the federal government assigned individual allotments of tribal lands to the Indians and took over the remaining land in their reservations for as little as 15 cents an acre, and later land was given away in a lottery. At noon on April 22, 1889, the area was opened to new settlement. In this first Oklahoma land rush homesteaders arrived on foot and on horseback, on wagons and by railroad. The white settlers sought more power through union, as a state, after the western half of the Indian Territory was organized as the Territory of Oklahoma, including the Panhandle.
There were several land openings in Oklahoma, but at different times. The
first was central OK in 1889, the Cherokee Strip in 1893, etc. In 1896 Greer Co. was given to OK from a TX claim, by the US Supreme Court, and about 4000
new homesteads were declared opened for settlement [Greer county, as it existed
in 1896, was divided in 1907 into Greer and Jackson counties]. There is also
the possibility that someone in one of the other openings sold their claim
before 'proving up' on it. You had to remain on the claim and 'improve' it,
before a 'patent' was issued by the President of the US.
Lewis Evans Shawbell came to Kansas from Pennsylvannia with his parents at age five, and age ten when the Civil War broke out. Twenty-three years later he made the Land Run into Oklahoma Territory from Kansas. Lewis was a carpenter and wagon maker in Kansas, and in 1877 built and opened a carpentery and harness shop in Ottumwa, where he grew up. In the late 1880's he was employed by the Missouri-Kansas-Texas RR as it built a Line through Burlington, KS. He met his future wife, Katherine while she was working on a cooking crew for the railroad, and they were married 22 Sept 1889. He was 38yrs old and Susan had just turned twenty on the sixteenth of the month.
He built a home on his first claim, Claim One, but shortly after traded for a better claim (Claim Two) near 50th and May Streets in today's modern Oklahoma City,OK. He again built a home there himself and seven of eight of their children were born there. In 1909, Lewis traded the Claim for 160 acre farm near Pauls Valley, Garvin Co., OK. Katherine and her four daughter's took the train to their new home, while Lewis and his three sons transported the family belongings and stock by wagon. Their eighth, and last child, a daughter, was born in Pauls Valley, Garvin Co.OK Lewis and 'Kate' lived there the rest of their lives.
Memoirs of Nettie Sarah Shawbell-Caldwell b. 14 March 1905 in Guthrie, Oklahoma Territory - 15 Dec 2001 in Tulsa,OK. Daughter of Lewis and Katherine Shawbell.
Where We Lived in Oklahoma: Early days in Garvin County
Edwin's parents, Edmond and Susanna Everly-Manley, his sister, Mable and three brother's, John, Julus, and Bruce came to Kansas in 1871 from Iowa and settled seven miles southwest of Waverly in Coffey Co. where he grew to manhood. In 1881, at age 19, Edwin embarked to Cheyenne, Wyoming where he was employed by the U.S. Government as a teamster, hauling ammunition and provisions for the soldiers. That same year he went to Fort Thomas, AZ near the San Carlos Indian Agency hauling ammunition for the Third Cavalry.
From Arizona he went to the Pine Ridge Indian Agency in South Dakota and escorted a remant of the Cheyenne tribe to Ft. Reno, Oklahoma Territory. In 1884 Edwin went to Colorado and remained there about a year before returning to his father's homestead in Coffey County, where he engaged in farming. He met Charlotte 'Lottie' DUDLEY there in 1886 and they married in Lebo, Coffey Co.,KS on 12 May 1887. They had three more children in Oklahoma Territory, Mary Alice, Ida, and Lucile.
The Last Run
Written by İEdwin Manley in 1937, while living in Tonkawa, Oklahoma. Edwin Manley b.10 July 1862 Cass Co.IA d. 23 Apr 1952 OK
Edmond and Susan Everly-Manley moved to their home Ponca City to live out their old age there. Contact: Eddie and Myra Manley Manley Family Genealogists