We’re Tossing Rice and Blowing Bubbles of Joy
November 13, 2002
We’re tossing rice and blowing bubbles of joy this week on the Oklahoma Audio Almanac.
Hello, I’m Steven Knoche Kite.
A wedding of sorts occurred this week in 1907 in Guthrie, and the entire state had reason to celebrate.
As the magic day approached, people from all over the region converged on Guthrie. Several days of celebration
went on as people prepared for, witnessed and celebrated the union. It was on Saturday November 16th,
1907 that a crowd numbering in the thousands gathered in downtown Guthrie to witness the marriage of Miss
Indian Territory and Mr. Oklahoma Territory.
The two territories were becoming Oklahoma, the forty-sixth state of the union, and the symbolic marriage
was meant to represent the joining of the twin territories. Before the ceremony a parade wound through
the streets of Guthrie. Marching along or riding in carriages were civic leaders of Oklahoma Territory,
the leaders of the Choctaw, Chickasaw, Cherokee, Seminole and Creek tribes of Indian Territory, marching
bands, numerous mounted cavalry and police units from both territories, as well as a host of Native Americans
and settlers dressed according to witnesses of the event, “in their finest attire.”
The parade came to a stop in front of the Carnegie Library to observe the inauguration of the first
governor of the state of Oklahoma, Charles N. Haskell. After the inauguration and the reading of the official
proclamation of statehood, Judge Frank Dale stepped forward to introduce to the crowd Mr. Oklahoma Territory
and Miss Indian Territory. CG Jones an Oklahoma City businessman played the part of the groom while Mrs.
Leo Bennett acted the role of the bride. Judge Dale spoke the wedding vows recounting the fact that although
Mr. Oklahoma Territory was only eighteen years old and born in Washington DC, he had been wooing Miss
Indian Territory for nearly his entire life. Of Miss Indian Territory it was said that despite the unhappy
circumstances of her youth, the beauteous maiden comes to him as the last descendant of the proudest race
that ever trod foot on American soil. The territories were united by Reverend WH Dodson and presented
to the crowd as the new state of Oklahoma! Following the playing of the wedding march the crowd sang the
Star Spangled Banner and applauded the new couple.
Weddings, inaugurations and a brand new state all happening this week in on the Almanac.
I'm Steven Knoche Kite.
The Oklahoma Audio Almanac is a joint production of the Oklahoma State University
Library and Oklahoma's Public Radio.