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Historical Markers

Alikchi Court Ground
McCurtain County
The last execution under Choctaw law was carried out here in 1899. According to Choctaw custom, a prisoner sentenced to death was allowed freedom to set family affairs in order from the time of sentencing until he returned to face the firing squad.
Located on OK-3, 1/2 mile east of Ringold

Barnes-Stevenson House
McCurtain County
The restored 1912 home of Judge T. J. Barnes is now owned by the McCurtain County Historical Society. Barnes was McCurtain County's first county judge. The house contains World War I-era furnishings.
Located at 302 Southeast Adams Street in Idabel

Beaver's Bend
McCurtain County
This unique park was developed between 1935 and 1941 by members of CCC Company 2815, one of many such units organized during the Great Depression by the federal government to provide employment for thousands of young men in conserving and developing the nation's natural resources
Located at Beavers Bend State Park near Broken Bow

Chickasaw Trail of Tears
McCurtain County
During the late 1830s and early 1840s, Chickasaw Indians removed by the United State government from Mississippi and Alabama passed near here on their way to a new homeland in present-day south-central Oklahoma. In 1937, an estimated 6,000 Chickasaws traveled by various routes to lands purchased from the Choctaw Indians, This journey became known as the "Chickasaw Trail of Tears."
Located on US Hwy 70 between Broken Bow and Arkansas state line

Chitto Harjo, Creek Patriot
McCurtain County
This Creek Indian leader opposed allotment of tribal lands and led rebellions against the federal government's abandonment of early treaties with the Indians. He died here in 1909 in the home of Choctaw citizen, Daniel Bob, after being wounded in a gun battle with federal deputy marshals.
Located in front yard of home five miles south of Smithville

Choctaw Chief Isaac Garvin
McCurtain County
Garvin served as principal chief of the Choctaws from 1879 to his death in 1880.
Located in Waterhole Cemetery three miles south of Garvin

Choctaw Chief Thomas LeFlore
McCurtain County
Leflore, chief of the Apuckshunnubbe District of the Choctaw Nation, 1834–1838 and 1842–1850, lived in a home built here under the 1830 Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek. He died in 1859 and was buried in a family cemetery nearby.
Located one mile west of Wheelock Mission on private land

Choctaw Trail of Tears
McCurtain County
During the early 1830s, Choctaw Indians removed by the United States government from Mississippi passed near here on their way to new homes in present-day Oklahoma. An estimated 15,000 Choctaws traveled by steamboat, wagon, and on foot to Oklahoma. Approximately one-quarter of the tribe perished from cold, disease, and starvation during the removal journey. This journey became known as the "Choctaw Trails of Tears."
Located at a point on US Hwy 70 near Broken Bow, Oklahoma

Clear Creek Water Mill
McCurtain County
The water mill was established here in 1818. At the site, the Negro spiritual, "Swing Low Sweet Chariot," was first introduced in writing. The song had been oral tradition until then.
Located on US-70 on west edge of Valliant

Cyrus Byington
McCurtain County
Byington established Stockbridge Mission at Eagletown in 1834 where he produced the Dictionary of the Choctaw Language. The federal government finally published the grammar book in 1915. It is recognized as one of the greatest contributions to the field of American ethnology.
Located in Eagletown Cemetery north of US-70

Eagletown
McCurtain County
The first permanent settlement among Western Choctaws was west of Mountain Fork River, but the present town was platted east of the river in 1821. Oklahoma's first post office was established here on July 1, 1834.
Located on US-70 west of Mountain Fork River at Eagletown

Elliott Memorial Academy
McCurtain County
The Presbyterian Board of Missions opened a boarding school for children of freed slaves here in 1886. It was called Oak Hill Industrial School until 1912 when David Elliott contributed funds for the construction of a dormitory in memory of his wife, Alice. Hundreds of African American students were trained here before the school closed in 1936.
Located on US-70, on west edge of Valliant,

Gardner Mansion
McCurtain County
Now privately owned, this two-story home belonged to Jefferson Gardner, principal chief of the Choctaws from 1894 to 1896. Well-known Choctaw minister and builder James Dyer constructed the house in 1884 near the site of old Eagletown.
Located on US-70 west of Mountain Fork River

Garland Cemetery
McCurtain County
This cemetery was the family burying ground for prominent Choctaws. Chief Samuel Garland, 1864–1866, established a plantation here after arrival over the Trail of Tears in the 1830s. Buried here are Chief Garland and his mother-in-law, Sophia Pitchlynn, the mother of Choctaw Chief Peter Pitchlynn.
Located on OK-3, three miles west of the Oklahoma-Arkansas border

Harris House
McCurtain County
Judge Henry C. Harris built the house in 1867. He served the Choctaw tribal government in several positions, including supreme judge of the Apukshunnubbe District. He founded Harris Ferry and operated a large plantation along the Red River.
Located on US-259, one mile south of Harris

Harris Mill Cemetery
McCurtain County
Located south side Hwy 70, one mile from Arkansas border

Hochatown
McCurtain County
Prehistoric hunters left spear points along the Mountain Fork River at Hochatown around 6,000 B.C. Caddo Indians occupied the area from 1,000–1791 A.C. The town was named for a Choctaw Indian, Hocha, who arrived on the Trail of Tears in 1833. White settlers moved into the area in 1900. The original town was inundated by waters from Broken Bow Lake in 1968.
Located on US-259 at Hochatown Union Church and Cemetery

Jadie
McCurtain County
The community was named for a pioneer Doan family member who settled the area before statehood.
Located on county road, three miles west of Cerro Gordo

Knights of Columbus Gift/John F. Kennedy Monument
McCurtain County
Sponsored by the members of the Poteau Knights of Columbus Council, the nearby granite and bronze marker commemorates the site where John F. Kennedy made his only address as President in Oklahoma.
Located near John F. Kennedy Monument, Big Cedar

Magnolia
McCurtain County
This two-story private home was built in 1912 for federal magistrate George A. Spaulding.
Located at 1307 Southeast Adams Street in Idabel

Military Road
McCurtain County
Cut from Washington, Arkansas, to Fort Towson in 1831 for removal of Choctaws from Mississippi, the road became known as the "Trail of Tears" after thousands of suffering Indians used it to reach the new land. The road served as a major east-west artery for the Choctaw Nation until early 1900s. Important early settlement along the road were Harris Mill, Eagletown, Lukfata, Wheelock, and Clear Creek. Segments of the road are still visible.
Located on US-70 at chamber of commerce office in Broken Bow

Miller Court House
McCurtain County
In 1821 this was the site of the first judicial proceedings in what would become Oklahoma. In 1824, a post office was established at an unknown site nearby as county seat of Miller County, Arkansas Territory. White settlers were forced out when the area was ceded to the Choctaws by treaty. The courthouse and post office burned in 1828.
Located on US-259 near US-70 junction in Idabel

Pecan Point
McCurtain County
In 1818 Methodist minister Reverend William Stevenson held the first Protestant church service in present-day Oklahoma here at a trading post established three years earlier by George and Alex Wetmore.
Located on US-259, one mile south of Harris

Shawneetown
McCurtain County
In the early 1800s a group of Absentee Shawnee Indians occupied a site near the Red River, southwest of present-day Idabel. The Shawnees departed in the 1830s when the area was ceded to the Choctaws.
Located on US-259 near US-70 junction in Idabel

Smithville
McCurtain County
Town's original name was Hatobi, but it was renamed in 1890. A nearby salt lick inspired the name of Big Lick Presbyterian Church, founded in the 1830s. The Folsom Training School was established here in the early 1920s.
Located on US-259, 1/4 mile west of Smithville

Soldier Joseph Oklahombi
McCurtain County
Located at Wright City

Sophia Folsom Pitchlynn
McCurtain County
In this cemetery is the grave of Sophia Folsom Pitchlynn, wife of Major John Pitchlynn, who served under General George Washington in the Revolutionary War.
Located in Garland Cemetery near town of Tom (DAR)

Three Choctaw Chiefs
McCurtain County
Three prominent Choctaw principal chiefs made Eagletown their home: George Hudson (1860–1862); Peter Pitchlynn (1864–1866); and Jefferson Gardner (1894–1896).
Located on US-70 west of Mountain Fork River

Transportation Crossroads
McCurtain County
During the early 1800s, present southeastern Oklahoma was a major transportation crossroads. Roads connected Fort Towson in the Choctaw Nation to military installations to the north, south, and west. On the Texas side of the Red River, Jonesboro was a major entry point for thousands headed for Austin's Colony and other settlements in Texas. Along these routes traveled such notable persons as General Zachary Taylor, Sam Houston, David Crockett, Jefferson Davis, and Benjamin Milan.
Located on US-70 between Vallient and Idabel

Waterhole Cemetery
McCurtain County
One of the first community cemeteries in McCurtain County, Waterhole was used by two Choctaw families in the 1870s, but later became a burial ground for all races. Choctaw Principal Chief Isaac Garvin is buried here.
Located on county road three miles south of Garvin

Wheelock Academy
McCurtain County
This boarding school for Choctaw orphan girls was completed in 1884 northeast of the Wheelock Church. Five of the buildings survived and are being restored by the Choctaw Nation.
Located on US-70, 1 1/2 miles east of Millerton

Wheelock Mission
McCurtain County
Wheelock is the oldest church building in Oklahoma. Built by Reverend Alfred Wright in 1846, the stone church is still used. Wright had established the mission among the Choctaws fourteen years earlier. Nearby was the Wheelock Academy, a famous school for Choctaw girls.
Located on US-70, 1 1/2 miles east of Millerton at church site

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