Garland Of Long Ago Was The Big City

Privacy Level: Public (Green)
Date: 1929
Location: Garland, Haskell, Oklahoma, United Statesmap
Surnames/tags: Oklahoma Indian Territory
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Stigler, Haskell Co. Oklahoma
18 April 1929

Old Timers Recall Many Interesting Facts of Many Years Ago


Perhaps it would be interesting to the many readers of State Sentinel who have heard of the tiny little community of Garland to know a bit of its early history.

Haskell County Map - ca1911

Garland is one of the very old settlements of Haskell county. Only Whitefield and Tamaha being older.

The first house in the present town was a small log house built by a Mr. Long, of McCurtain and Will Long of Blaine. Soon, like all pioneer communities, others built homes near Mr. Long. The town was called Long Town until the post office was moved to the home of Mr. Long. For a long time Mr. Long used a large dry goods box for the post office.

Garland post office was first established in the home of Judge Garland, which stood near the artesian well, two and a half miles southwest of the present town. When the community of Long Town sprang up and demanded a post office, Judge Garland was only too glad to shift the responsibility to another man.

The post office continued under the name of Garland, although it was moved to another place. Eventually Long Town, became known as Garland for no better reason, perhaps, than that was the name of the post office.

The post office was discontinued years later when a rural route was surveyed from Stigler through the Garland settlement. Since that time the town has grown smaller and smaller, in a business way, until only one store remains. It is operated at the present time by Fred Wilson.

Among the earliest citizens of Garland community were Judge Garland after whom the town was named later; Tom Daniels, Dr. C.C. Jones, Uncle Ham Prentice, J.C. Hulsey and Sol Brown.

Hulsey & Garland Family Gathering - ca 1913

Judge Garland was the father of W.G., Frank and Gent Garland, all of whom are dead except Gent, who still lives at Garland. Gent Garland is the father of the late Mrs. W.H. Hulsey, who died in Stigler last December.

Thirty-eight years ago, Judge Garland, W.G. Garland and J.C. Hulsey, father of W. H. Hulsey, who now resides in Stigler, formed a stock company. This was the largest ranching company in Eastern Oklahoma at that time.

The first home, as related by W.H. Hulsey, that the family of J.C. Hulsey occupied, was a log cabin without shutters for the doors. The house stood near where Bert Prentice(sic) now lives. It was in the dead of winter when the Hulseys moved there from Cowlington, Okla. For a long time the family did its trading with Robinson and Stein of Cowlington, making these long trips by wagon as often as necessity demanded. It was no small matter to trade in those days as there were no roads nor bridges. The teamsters were compelled to pick the best train and ford the streams when they were not too deep, other wise they camped on the bank until it ran down.

This, continued Mr. Hulsey, "was when the grass grew so tall that he could touch the tops while riding the range." On Taloka prairie it was not uncommon to see dozens of deer in one herd. Wild turkeys and hogs were so numerous that they would come up to the barn of Hulseys' home to eat with the stock when the snows were so deep that it was difficult for them to subsist on the range.

Garland Cemetery - Est 1895

The first school house in the neighborhood was built at the Garland cemetery, or rather where the cemetery is now located. It was then called Taloka cemetery and Taloka school.

The first teacher in the community was Frank Jones. Following Jones was B.F. Walker. Walker was said to have been a very fine teacher at that time.

Later, when the post office was moved, a new school was built and the school and cemetery was renamed Garland in honor of Judge Garland.

The new school was built by contract, the Bone Bros, being awarded the contract. The Oddfellow and Masonic lodges helped pay for the new building, using the upper story for a lodge hall until the building was blown down by wind years later. This old school stood across the street in front of where Mrs. (obscured) now lives, better known to old times as the Widow Cox place.

Garland Students 1912

After the destruction of the old school, the site was moved to the present site, one half mile west of the little village. At first it was a two roomed structure, but the community grew so rapidly that they were obliged to add the third room later. Some ten or twelve years ago the people of Taloka community grew tired of sending their children so far to school and preceded to form a new district. This and other changes reduced the number of pupils at Garland until it is now only a two room school.

Dr. C.C. Jones was the first doctor at the little village of Garland.

Just here it would be well to mention a few old times in the Garland and Taloka settlement:

There was Uncle Ham Prentice, the father of Frank, Bert(sic), and Grover Prentice. He was among the early farmers and ranchmen of the Garland community.

Perhaps the largest land holder who ever lived at Garland was Uncle Ward Garland, father of Buddie and (uncle to) Willie Garland. Willie was the father of Clint, Ray and Garrett Garland. Clint lives at Stigler and is a partner with W.H. Hulsey in the stock business. Ray who also lives in Stigler is bookkeeper at the Midland Valley mines near Garland. Uncle Ward owned hundreds of acres of bottom as well as prairie land. He too, was interested in the cattle business on a large scale.

Uncle Arnold Folsom was the first preacher to live at Garland. He was the father of Willie Folsom and Bob Folsom.

The first gin at Garland was owned by a Mr. Bridgeman. Later is was bought and operated by Patterson and Blaylock. The coming of the railroad and the building of Stigler finally caused this gin to go out of business.

Uncle Phil Patterson still owns the old stand where he continues to run a grist mill. Uncle Phil is getting old but still knows how to make good corn meal -- so say his many customers.

Garland was the home of Sol C. Brown for years. Mr. Brown is a well known Stigler farmer and stockman. It was at Garland that J. Henry Brown, son of Sol Brown, received his first impression of a rural school. J. Henry is the newly elected county superintendent, taking office July 1.


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