Collection: Choctaw Freedmen and Oak Hill Industrial Academy

Tributes to the Workers

These tributes to worthy workers seem incomplete, without some reference to the faithful co-operation of some of the young people, who, making rapid progress in their studies and industrial training, during the later years of this period, and serving efficiently as workers, foremen and occasional teachers, made possible the large amount of improvement work necessary to overcome the losses sustained. The memory recalls the names of the following students, whose responsible and efficient co-operation was thus worthy of grateful mention. Occasional Teachers and Leaders: Paul Thornton, Vina Jones, Delia Clark1, Isabella Monroe, Ruby Moore1, Virginia Wofford, Sarah Milton, Celestine Seats, Solomon Buchanan, Riley Flournoy, Clarence and Herbert Peete. Carpenters and Cement Workers: David Folsom 1Deceased. , Solomon Burris, Louis and Alvin Pitchlin, Isaiah Nelson, Clarence Peete, Noah Alverson, Riley Flournoy, Fred and Percy McFarland, Thomas Wilson, George Hollingsworth, Frank Dickson, Ashley and Alonza McLellan and Brown Gaffony. Painters: Solomon Buchanan, Frank Dickson, John Black, Eugene Perry, Wesley Lewis, Herbert Peete and Cornell Smith. Farmers and Trustworthy Teamsters: James Stewart, James Burris. James Richards, Dee McFarland, Robert Johnson, Robert Maxie, S. S. Bibbs, and Everett Richards. Footnotes:   [ + ] 1. ↩...

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The Synod of Canadian

The following is the enabling act of the General Assembly at Columbus, Ohio, May 24, 1907, establishing the synod of Canadian, to consist of the colored Presbyterian ministers and Churches in the states of Arkansas and Oklahoma. It Is Hereby Enacted By The General Assembly “That the Synod of Canadian is hereby erected and constituted, to consist of the Presbyteries of White River, Kiamichi and Rendall; and the synod of Canadian, as thus constituted, shall meet in the meeting place of the First Colored Presbyterian congregation in Oklahoma City, on Tuesday, the 8th day of October, 1907, at 7:30 o’clock p. m.; that the Rev. W. L. Bethel shall preside until the election of a Moderator, that the Rev. W. D. Feaster preach the opening sermon and that elder J. H. A. Brazleton act as temporary clerk, until the election of a stated and permanent clerk.” The assembly at this time enlarged the boundary of the Presbytery of Kiamichi so as to include the south half of the state of Oklahoma and established the Presbytery of Kendall to include the north half of it, the Canadian river, and below its mouth the Arkansas River, forming the boundary line between them. It also enlarged the boundary of White River Presbytery to include all the colored Presbyterian ministers and Churches in the synod, or state, of Arkansas. First Meeting At Oklahoma...

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The Self-Help Department

The unexpected disappointments experienced in establishing the self-help department are worthy of a brief mention. They serve to illustrate some foolish notions that prevailed among some of our first patrons, and prepare the way for a good suggestion. The aim of this department is to enlarge the scope of the training work of the institution by the employment of students, as far as possible, to do the necessary work during vacations as well as the chores during the school-terms; and by this means, reducing the number of hired helpers, afford lucrative employment to the greatest number of students, as a means of self help. In view of the needy and helpless condition of the people in their new homes, and the urgent prospective demand for more teachers, one would naturally suppose every family would be eager to take advantage of such an opportunity. The scheme however was a new one and it was regarded with suspicion and disfavor. The effort to have leading families, those that seemed to stand in the nearest relation to it by having previously enjoyed its privileges most freely, co-operate in the establishment of this plan, by permitting one of their children to remain at the academy during the vacation period or even do extra work a part of the day during the term, and thereby be able to continue and complete a course of...

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The Public School System

The public school is the general and permanent agency for the education and uplift of the colored people. Religious and independent schools may do a splendid work in their several localities, but the public school is intended to be state-wide. It alone reaches the masses of colored children, and it should receive its due share of the public funds. The fact that they have not received any thing like a fair share of the public funds, for their equipment and support, has already been stated. This, to a great extent, is an act of injustice. Conditions however are gradually...

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“Problem of the Negro”

The “Problem of the Negro” is an old and familiar phrase. It relates to the fact, that, however many and great have been the benefits derived from his labor and loyalty, the best management of him has been a troublesome problem to the statesmen of this country, ever since the declaration of independence, and especially the Freedman, since his emancipation.

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The Oak Hill Academy Prospectus in 1912

In 1912 the prospectus of the Oak Hill Industrial Academy included the following announcements: Free tuition and books are accorded neighborhood pupils under thirteen, that attend regularly after the time of their enrollment. Those over fourteen are expected to pay fifty cents a month. The hope is expressed that every one living near the Academy will see the propriety of making the same noble endeavor to enjoy its valuable privileges for improvement that is made by the many patrons who live at a distance. An opportunity will be afforded a limited number of both boys and girls over fourteen years to work out their term expenditures, with the exception of $5.00 which must be paid at the time of enrollment. This opportunity to work one’s own way through school is given to two boys and two girls during the term at one time and to others during the vacation period. After spending six and one-half or seven hours at study in the class room, three hours, in the latter part of the afternoon of each day, are devoted to industrial training and work on the farm, in the shop, kitchen, laundry or sewing room. All work during this period, is required to be done by the rule, which is first stated at the time of assignment, and afterwards illustrated during the hours of work; and the student is required...

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