18 July 2011

Darlington, Indian Territory newspaper

With Oklahoma Territory being opened to settlement in Apr 1889 I am always surprised to see records predating that date. However, all of Oklahoma was Indian Territory prior to Oklahoma Territory being established. And the US government had military posts and forts scattered throughout the Territory. One Indian agency was the Cheyene/Arapahoe Agency at Darlington IT.

This Agency published a newspaper called The Cheyenne Transporter. Copies have been scanned and are available for research at the Library of Congress' site "Chronicling America".

I searched separately for 12 key words/phrases related to deaths (death, died, murdered, suicide, etc.). In issued from 1880 through 1886 I was able to find 119 recordings of deaths in the bounds of current Oklahoma. These have now been added to the Pre1920 Oklahoma Death Index. The one thing that bothers me about extracting these records is that it takes so long. To get these 119 records, I spent approximately 20 hours of research time over a 10 day period.

One must realize that I skipped over about the same number of obits/death notices for people who died outside of Oklahoma and who had never lived in Oklahoma. Many were residents of southern Kansas and western Missouri, relatives of residents of Darlington IT.

Currently, I'm working on the Tulsa Star, a Black/Colored/Negro/Afro-American newspaper. Scanned issues are available at Chronicling America from 1913-1922.

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