Indian Pioneer Papers - Index
Indian Pioneer History Project for Oklahoma
Date: Sep 16, 1937
Name: Mrs. Mattie Baker
Post Office: Pauls Valley, Oklahoma
Date of Birth: March 17, 1872
Place of Birth: Arkansas
Father: W. L. Ready
Place of Birth: Tennessee
Information on father:
Mother: Margaret Smithon
Place of birth: Tennessee
Information on mother:
Field Worker: Maurice R. Anderson
I, Mrs. Mattie Baker was born in
1872 in Arkansas. I came to the Indian Territory with my father and
mother in 1888. We came from Arkansas in a covered wagon. We
first settled at Pauls Valley and my father rented some land on the east side
of the railroad track at Pauls Valley. The first year we were
here, my father had the land where the east side of Pauls Valley is now sown
in wheat. There was a cotton gin east and it was run by water.
There was a grist mill there and according to older settlers as well as myself
this mill was put there by Zack Gardner in the early seventies.
My father farmed at Pauls Valley
two years and then we moved southwest of Pauls Valley about ten miles, where
my father had bought a lease.
There wasn't any school in that
part of the country, so with help from some neighbors, my father built the
first school in that part of the country. It was a log school house
built of split logs and with wooden pegs driven into other logs for seats. I
went to this school and we only had Blue Back Spellers for books. The
school only held six months out of the year and it cost one dollar and fifty
cents a month for each child sent. This school was named for my father
and was called Roady School.
When we came to Pauls Valley we
had to ford the Washita River at Zack Gardner's mill. There was a ferry
crossing at Cherokee town at the time we came to Pauls Valley.
I married R. P. Baker after we had
been at Pauls Valley a few years and he told me that he and his brother came
to Pauls Valley in 1872. They were orphan boys and he was only sixteen, and
the younger of the two. He said when they came here this was a
wild country and that there was a stage line running from Caddo to Fort Sill
through Pauls Valley and that it was dangerous for a white man to start west
from Pauls Valley by himself as the Comanche Indians were bad. He and
his brother helped put up hay along this stage line, between Pauls Valley and
Fort Sill, and after the railroad came through this stage line was stopped.
My husband put in the first
livery stable at Pauls Valley. My husband was also in the grocery
business at Brady. At that time there were two stores, a blacksmith shop
and a gin at Brady. There were lots of people trading at this little
place. After automobiles came in they killed those little towns as
people went to trading at the larger places where they could buy their
I now live at my home on the
southwest side of Pauls Valley.
Submitted to OKGenWeb by Brenda Choate <email@example.com>