Prairie City: The Story of an American Community

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Overview

Prairie City is the social history of a representative midwestern town - a composite of several Oklahoma small towns. Beginning with the "one flashing moment" of the 1889 land run, which opened the "Oklahoma Lands" for white settlement, Angie Debo depicts the struggles of the settlers on the vast prairie to build a community despite seasons of drought, prairie fire, and destitution. Solidly based on historical research, Prairie City chronicles the arrival of the railroad, the growth of political parties and educational institutions, KKK uprisings, the oil boom, the Depression and the New Deal, and the effects of two world wars on small-town America.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
First published in 1944, Prairie City records the American frontier. Historian Debo, who came to Oklahoma Territory as a child, charts the life of a typical village from settlement through World War II. This is splendid social history, the quintessential American story of people and community. Debo portrays families building shelter, plowing prairie sod for crops, coping with drought and fire. The opening of the Cherokee Strip in 1893 doubled the size of Prairie City's trade territory; there were churches, a school, clubs, a volunteer band. The railroad arrived in 1902, followed by grain elevators. But not all was wellyoung people lacked educational opportunities, and the business population was unstable. The period between the two world wars saw an uprising from the Ku Klux Klan, bank failures and an oil boom. It would be instructive to have an update on Prairie City. Debo is now 95 years old and, we are told, ``lives and works'' in Oklahoma. Photos. History Book Club alternate. January
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780806130941
  • Publisher: University of Oklahoma Press
  • Publication date: 9/28/1998
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 254
  • Sales rank: 1,423,269
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Angie Debo was reared in a pioneer community, at Marshall, Oklahoma, where it has been her privilege to know from childhood the folkways of the Indians and the traditions of the western settlers. A member of her community high school's first graduating class, she later attended the University of Oklahoma, where she was a Phi Beta Kappa, and took her B.A. and later her Ph.D. degree; she received her master's degree from the University of Chicago. Her education was combined with intervals of teaching in country schools, starting at the age of sixteen.

Miss Debo's distinguished reputation as a regional scholar has been enhanced by her book, The Rise and. Fall of the Choctaw Republic, which won the John H. Dunning prize of the American Historical Society for the best book submitted in the field of United States history in 1934, and for her later, book, And Still the Waters Run. She has been a teacher in schools and colleges both in Oklahoma and Texas and was curator of the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum in Canyon, Texas. More recently she has been state director of the Federal Writers' Project in Oklahoma, in which capacity she edited Oklahoma: A Guide to the Sooner State for the American Guide Series.

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