Oklahoma Pioneer Mittie Stephens Cobb enjoyed family, home and garden. Mittie's 1941 Journal shares weathered pioneer experiences and every day life in Arapaho, Oklahoma. Mittie and Rufus "Dad" lived west of Arapaho with daughter Mary and son Frank and owned the Cobb Store in Arapaho. Cecil and Lena Cobb, Fannie and Richard Bland lived nearby. George, Jack, Loys Cooper, Randall and Mildred Shankland moved out of state and stayed in touch by letters. Mittie turned 73 years in 1941 outliving three of her children, Rexie, Rollie and Harvey.

It was serendipity

to have Mittie's Journal to read and share in 2008. The calendar days of 1941 are the same as 2008. Richard received the Journal from his mother, Fannie, and gave the Journal to his cousin Betty in spring 2008. This great-granddaughter first had it in hand in July 2008. For a few weeks it was transcribed to email for family. Mittie's Journal blog began October 12, the anniversary of the day Mittie and Rufus landed at Gip, Oklahoma 1892 in open prairie. Check out that Journal entry. It is a blessing to share this Journal with others. To stay in the matching year the remaining Journal days appear in the Journal Archive as they are posted. Thanks for stopping by.

Red River quicksand

While Governor Leon C. Phillips is trying to stop work on the Red River dam where Texas and Oklahoma would be joined, I came near being drowned in this same River of Story and Song.

Note: In 1941 Mittie recorded in her journal a traveling day of October 1887. In 1938 Congress authorized the construction of a dam and reservoir north of Denison, Texas, to control the flooding of the Red River, generate electrical power, and provide irrigation. Lake Texoma, the reservoir, with a shoreline of 1,250 miles, would be developed by the Department of the Interior and the National Park Service. Oklahoma Governor Leon C. Phillips 1939-1943 objected to the Texoma plans and started litigation. On June 2, 1941 the Supreme Court ruled the project was constitutional and the federal government was not invading state rights.

While telling of it's glory and fame I shudder when thinking of what came near being my fate. The first year after our marriage we were moving and had to cross the Red River. One team was hitched to the front wagon which my husband was driving. I was laying on a mattress and springs and sick expecting to become a mother in a few months. The team stopped mid-way of Stream. They had struck a Bar of Quick Sand and the wagon was slowly sinking for the team couldn't pull the loaded wagon that sunk down to the Hubs.

Husband cut the lines of the harness loose then rode to landing. One of the drivers, an older man, was driving another wagon team. He had a gentler horse. He rode to our wagon, picked me up and placed me in front of him and rode for Shore where we spend the afternoon and night. The men worked laboriously at the stranded wagon until night, it was unloaded one article at a time until all things were out and empty wagon pulled by horse and lifted by men was then landed on the Bank.

All the household goods, bedding I used and three large trunks with fine quilts, blankets and coverlets and dresses were watersoaked with Red River stains that never left them. These highly treasured goods bearing memories of my dear deceased mother were ruined. I cried all afternoon from pain and heart sickness at loss. The three men were very kind and considerate. The bedding was dried by Campfire. They tried in every way to get me to eat something but my appetite was gone same as those treasures.

When morning come the Sun arose bright and clear, warming us up and putting Cheer and Courage into our hearts. I was asked if my aches and pains were over. We decided to begin loading up the wagon again as most things were dried out. My health remained delicate for two months until my baby boy was born in our new log house in Chickasaw Nation. There was no doctor to attend. I lay for three weeks before any strength returned to my body. The little Babe gave us much pleasure. We as parents worked hard and made many plans for improvements.

Journal, to be continued.


Rufus and Mittie Cobb with son, about 1888.

January 1941

January 1941
Mittie used "scrapbooking" on daily journal entry.

February 1941

March 1941

April 1941

May 1941

June 1941

July 1941

August 1941

September 1941

October 1941

November 1941

December 1941

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