Sent to the Frederick Leader and the Frederick Press, November 23, 2010
Frederick promoted in 1907 advertising
Frederick and southwest Oklahoma was promoted heavily to potential new residents and investors in 1907 by the Oklahoma Townsite Company.
The western part of Tillman County was opened for settlement by land lottery in August 1901 and the city of Frederick was organized in 1902. The eastern part of Tillman County was opened to settlement late in 1906.
The Oklahoma Townsite Company distributed marketing materials throughout the United States and arranged for interested individuals to visit Frederick and Tillman County.
Following is the firm’s 1907 information about the city of Frederick:
“The magic city and county seat of Tillman County is Frederick, situated on the Frisco and Wichita Falls & Northwestern railroads, twenty-five miles northeast of Vernon, fifty miles from Wichita Falls, fifty-one miles from Lawton.
“Frederick has a population of three thousand or more and is five miles west of the “Big Pasture or Comanche Reservation,” where 3,000 families have located within the past six months.
“It is destined to be the best town and the metropolis of this part of Oklahoma.
“There are unlimited resources and opportunities in this fast growing and wonderful western city awaiting future development. It is here the young man of energy and enterprise will find the GOLDEN OPPORTUNITY that will make his future fortune.
“Frederick has three banks with deposits of over $500,000, two newspapers, a telephone system, electric light plant, an excellent sewerage system, three grain elevators, a $100,000 oil mill and four cotton gins with a capacity of three hundred bales per day. A 25-ton ice factory is soon to be constructed. There are three large hotels and over one hundred business firms, beside all the professions represented.
Lodges and Churches
“The following lodges are in Frederick – Masonic, Royal Arch, Knight Templars, Knights of Pythias, Woodmen of the World, Modern Woodmen, Odd Fellows and Eagles.
“There are four handsome church buildings, Presbyterian, Christian, Methodist and Baptist (First Baptist Church in the course of construction costing $15,000. This is the church at 11th and Grand that would later burn in 1931).
“The culture and great interest in educational matters of the people of Frederick is shown by the modern and handsome new school building that is being erected at a cost of $25,000 (NOTE: This building was likely the first Frederick High School, a brick building that was located on East Grand where the present Frederick Middle School now stands). The number of pupils is increasing rapidly each year.
“Beside the Frisco Railway and the Wichita Falls & Northwestern Railway which has just been completed the Commercial Club of this enterprising and growing little city has entered into a contract with the Gotebo & Southwestern Railway Co. to have their line completed and running within twelve months from date of contract. This will give Frederick three railroads. (NOTE: The Gotebo and Southwestern Railway plans never developed).
“The land is all right; it will grow anything that is given half a chance by the farmer. It is so level that it will never wash away and is so strong that it will never fail you. Come and see.
“The land is a deep loam of chocolate color, ranging in shade from almost black to the lighter grays. It is here that cotton and wheat belts overlap. Either crop does equally as well and the farmer has his choice and by planting some of each for a money crop does not have to put all his eggs in one basket.
“A happy medium of latitude and climatic conditions seems to have been found in this section, where the agricultural products of both the North and the South are brought together.
“Droughts are unknown and sparkling streams of pure fresh water traverse the country.
“There is no more healthier place in the world. Malaria, asthma, consumption and catarrh disappear.
“Do you wonder they why Frederick is destined to become a city of 20,000 or more population in a few years and property values DOUBLE and quadruple during that time?”
Joe Wynn is a member of the Tillman County Historical Society Board. He can be contacted by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.