The Oklahoma Land Run of 1889

A gunshot fired. A cannon roared. Horses startled and wagons sprang to life. On April 22, 1889, settlers flooded into the region of central Oklahoma known as the Unassigned Lands. President Benjamin Harrison signed a proclamation on March 23, 1889, opening the land, and people came from across the country to claim it. According to the Homestead Act of 1862, if a settler could stay on the land they claimed for five years and improved it, the land would be theirs free and clear. Some people were very excited about the 1889 Land Run and were ready to try to make a new life in Oklahoma Territory. There were also people, however, who did not want new settlers to come into the territory.

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2 Responses to The Oklahoma Land Run of 1889

  1. wildbill says:

    When I lived in Oklahoma in the mid 60’s (64-66) we celebrated this in grade school. We’d wear our “western” clothes and our cap guns to school. The lunch staff would make up sack lunches and we’d go out on the playground and each class would stake out their claim and eat lunch. I doubt they do that anymore.

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