The Fabric Of Our Lives | Cotton
in part because of the growth of the cotton economy
In the 1930s oil and cotton dominated Wetumka's economy. Five cotton gins and sixteen petroleum companies were in operation. In the mid-1930s workers at a nearby Civilian Conservation Corps camp provided much-needed assistance in soil conservation. City amenities included nine churches, a park, a lake, and a junior college. As cotton production declined through the next decade, only three gins operated in the 1940s. Railey Manufacturing Company provided employment to workers who crafted wood flooring and doors. Municipal plants provided water and electricity, Oklahoma Natural Gas supplied gas, and Southwestern State Telephone furnished phone service. A prisoner of war camp for German prisoners, erected during World War II, closed in December 1945. The municipally owned Wetumka General Hospital opened in March 1960. In March 1973 a municipal complex opened to replace city hall, which had been destroyed by fire on November 13, 1971. By the 1970s all cotton gins were defunct.
Between 1900 and 1901 the St. Louis, Oklahoma and Southern Railway (later the St. Louis and San Francisco Railway) erected a line from Sapulpa through Wetumka to the Red River. As the town developed, it served as a shipping point for cotton, corn, pecans, and livestock. By 1909 it supported three banks, two cotton gins, three blacksmith shops, two liveries, and a tin shop. Early-day newspapers included the Wetumka News-Herald, the Wetumka News, the Wetumka Herald, and the Wetumka Gazette. In July 1912 a two-story structure, costing fifteen thousand dollars, was completed to house a city hall and a meeting place for the Masonic lodge. With the advent of the automobile, good-roads enthusiasts in Wetumka in 1915 decided that a one-cent gasoline tax should be assessed to create revenue for improving roads. By 1918 the town supported four cotton gins, a mill and elevator, a wagonyard, an ice company, and a water and light company.
from long-staples cotton in two ways: Its seeds ..
KeywordsOklahoma town history Wetumka Indian Baptist Church Hughes County Holdenville Creek Indian Territory Wetumpka Civil War William Robinson Dave Barnett David Benson Robert Carr ranch Sapulpa Red River cotton corn Masonic lodge oil Jack Walton Civilian Conservation Corps natural gas prisoner of war camp Germans World War II Levering Manual Labor Mission School Home Board Southern Baptist Convention Works Progress Administration Wes Watkins Technology Center Suckers( Day National Register
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