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Baptist Mission

Adair County
Location: 3 miles north of junction of US 62 and US 59 at Old Baptist Mission Church, Westville vicinity
Coordinates: 36.035258, -94.583987
Material: Aluminum
Topics: Westward Expansion 1803–1861, Religion/Philosophy, Education, American Indians

The present-day white frame building contains some of the original timbers of the log church built in 1839. Reverend James Bushyhead, the first supreme court judge of the Cherokee Nation, established the mission which the Cherokees called Bread Town. The Cherokee Messenger, a religious publication, was printed at the mission beginning in 1844. Bacone College at Muskogee is an outgrowth of the school begun at Baptist Mission.

Fairfield Mission

Adair County
Location: at junction of OK-100 and US-59 on south edge of Stilwell
Note: Marker reported missing
Topics: Westward Expansion 1803–1861, Religion/Philosophy, Education, American Indians

The mission building, completed in 1829 by Dr. Marcus Palmer, a missionary to the Cherokees, stood in a grove of large trees a few hundred feet east of the cemetery now known as McLemore Cemetery. Noted missionaries and teachers at the mission included Elizur Butler, Charles C. Torrey, Clarissa Palmer, Lucy Butler, and Esther Smith. A circulation library, possibly the state's first, was established at the mission in 1832.

Fort Wayne

Adair County
Location: on US-59 on south edge of Watts
Coordinates: 36.105500, -94.574600
Sponsored by: Oklahoma Historical Society
Material: Granite
Topics: Westward Expansion 1803–1861, Military, American Indians

Established in 1838 by Lt. Col. R.B. Mason, 1st Dragoons, U.S. Army, at request of Arkansas citizens fearing Cherokees who were being removed from southeastern U.S. Named in honor of Gen. "Mad" Anthony Wayne, the fort was originally located in NE corner of present-day Watts on a hill, overlooking Illinois River. Considered poor location because many soldiers died there including Capt. John Stuart, 7th infantry. In 1839, fort was abandoned and moved to Beatie's Prairie west of Maysville, Arkansas. That site abandoned in 1842 and troops moved north to establish Fort Scott, Kansas.

Robert Rogers

Adair County
Location: three miles north of the junction of US-59 and OK-62
Topics: Westward Expansion 1803–1861, Settlement Patterns, American Indians

Robert Rogers, father of Clem Vann Rogers and grandfather of Will Rogers, was born in Georgia on July 16, 1815. He and his wife, Sally Vann, moved to Indian Territory before the removal of the Five Tribes from the southeastern United States. Robert Rogers was a signer of the removal Treaty of New Echota. He died on July 4, 1842.

Starr Springs

Adair County
Location: at junction of OK-100 and US-59 on south edge of Stilwell
Note: Marker reported missing
Topics: Westward Expansion 1803–1861, American Indians, Environmental/Cultural Ecology, Settlement Patterns

Starr Springs was the head of Sallisaw Creek, a source of water for Stilwell since 1910. The area was the site of the 1853 murder of Andrew Adair and his son, George W. Adair, because of their support for Cherokee removal. The spring was named for George Harlan Starr, a prominent Cherokee, who purchased the site in 1867. The marker is a tribute to D.M. "Mack" Starr, respected and knowledgeable Cherokee historian, who died in 1995.

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To find out more about the Oklahoma Historical Society Historical Marker Program or how to submit an application, please visit the Historical Marker Program page.

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If you have questions, please contact:
Matthew Pearce
Oklahoma Historical Society
800 Nazih Zuhdi Drive
Oklahoma City, OK 73105