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Oklahoma's at-large congressional seat

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

In 1913, Oklahoma was apportioned three additional congressional seats. For just the 63rd United States Congress, those three members represented the state at-large.

Years Cong
ess
Seat A Seat B Seat C
Representative Party Electoral history Representative Party Electoral history Representative Party Electoral history
March 3, 1913 –
March 3, 1915
63rd
Murray 3820618984 5cb0d9555b o.jpg

William H. Murray
Democratic Redistricted to the 4th district and seat eliminated
Joseph Bryan Thompson.jpg

Joseph Bryan Thompson
Democratic Redistricted to the 5th district and seat eliminated
Claude Weaver, Oklahoma.jpg

Claude Weaver
Democratic Lost re-election and seat eliminated

In 1933, Oklahoma was apportioned one additional seat. For the 73rd through the 77th congresses, Will Rogers held the seat at-large. In 1943, the seat was eliminated.

Years Cong
ess
Representative Party Electoral history
March 3, 1933 –
January 3, 1943
73rd
74th
75th
76th
77th
Will Rogers politician.jpg

Will Rogers
Democratic Retired and seat eliminated

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  • ✪ 100 Years of Oklahoma Extension
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Transcription

Extension Service is one of those real jewels in this country. Anyone who's ever used it, anyone who's ever been in 4-H, anyone who's ever had a relative who's participated in a contest sponsored, anyone who's ever gone to the home extension economist or the county agent to ask a technical question understands what an important asset. This is farm to you and it's a program put on by OSU Extension. It basically teaches kids about agriculture. It gives an educational, hands-on, fun program for the kids to learn where their food comes from, and then how it affects the body. Tomorrow we will head to Stillwell, Oklahoma. This program goes all over the state, so we've been to 71 of the 77 counties. There's 10 stations, and each of them is a different topic. So the first four talk about agriculture, so they talk about growing fruits and vegetables, raising dairy cows. Then after those then they enter the body through the mouth. Then they go into the stomach area, and on into the intestines. They love that one. That is the small intestine, so those are the villi hang down and they get to learn about that and what that does in our body. So then they talk about muscle and bone, and the importance of nutrition for that. The final station is the skin station where they get to see their germs. We are able to partner with our FFA chapters and provide those students with a leadership opportunity, and they're the ones leading the different sessions. We do have really high rates of obesity, unfortunately, in Oklahoma. High rates of heart disease, high rates of smoking and tobacco as well. So we're not only promoting what our commodities are but we're also educating and providing good information of where these products come from and how they benefit our health. Its just one more way that extension can reach out and educate the public, which is our goal, to really help our cities and our communities be better. We have this remarkable presence in all 77 counties, which gives us the ability to extend what's going on here on the campus in Stillwater throughout the state today instantly through technology and through our extension agents. At noon on April 22, 1889, settlers lined up for the first Oklahoma land run. By the end of that day, Oklahoma City and Guthrie would come into existence with at least 10,000 new citizens. Many of the settlers were not looking for life in the towns and cities, but somewhere to grow crops and raise livestock. They wanted to be farmers. And this posed a problem. Little was known about the climate or soils in the new territory. These new farmers weren't quite sure what to plant, and in some cases, even how to farm. We assume most of the people that came here were from farming backgrounds but many people had not. There was the first opportunity to own land. Also, it took a while for us to find what was going to grow in different parts of the state One crop that did show promise was cotton, particularly in southern Oklahoma. King cotton, as it was called during the Civil War, still dominated the South. The yearly cotton crops fed local cotton gins before being shipped to textile mills on the East Coast. But in 1892, the Mexican Boll Weevil crossed the Rio Grande river into Texas. [Boll Weevil song] The beetle fed on cotton buds and flowers, and spread at a rate of 60 miles per year throughout the South. Entire farms and even towns were abandoned as it moved into new areas. The beetles fed on cotton buds and flowers, and spread at a rate of 60 miles per year throughout the South. Entire farms and even towns were abandoned as they moved into new areas. In an effort to save the industry, the federal government turned to a past college administrator and agriculturist by the name of Seaman Knapp. While serving as President of Iowa State College, Knapp started a campus farm to experiment with local crops and production methods. It was so successful, Congress asked him to help write the Hatch Act, a federal law that established similar experimental farms at every agricultural college throughout the US. But farmers often never heard about or ignored the new discoveries and farm practices made at these facilities. What was needed was a way to extend this knowledge directly to farmers. People like Seaman Knapp come along and they figure out that it's very, very critical to take scientific knowledge that is being developed in being able to produce food. You just can't take science and say to a farmer or an average citizen "Here take it. Do what you to want with it." You got to people who can translate it. Knapp began by setting up a demonstration farm in Terrell, Texas. The Porter family agreed to farm 70 acres of cotton as directed by Knapp. Local businessmen put up one-thousand dollars as a guarantee in case the crop failed. It didn't. Porter's harvest was twice as large as the previous years. The demonstration farm was so successful that in 1904 Congress appropriated funds for Knapp to form the Office of Farmers' Cooperative Demonstration Work. Knapp knew the problems went far beyond the boll weevil, which only exposed "wrong farming" and bad business practices. Farming to him was both science and art. The science of agriculture could be taught, but becoming a successful farmer also required observation, experience and good business methods. Farmers of the day were deeply suspicious of the federal government telling them what to do. A better way was to show them. Knapp expanded demonstration farms throughout the state. To help establish these farms, Knapp began hiring special agents. These agents were usually young men with agricultural backgrounds. They travelled the state visiting with farmers in their demonstration fields at least once a month between planting and harvesting. But they also tried to help any farmer in need. Some of the farmers they met were not receptive. In fact some of these farmers were resentful of these young whipper-snappers telling them that they needed to change how they did things. Extension agents didn't force change on people. They simply came in and said if you would like to with us we would like to work with you. One of those agents hired was a Texan farmer named Walter Dimmitt Bentley. After three years of lecturing, Knapp asked Bentley to help develop an extension service in the western part of Indian Territory. In late summer of 1907, Bentley became the first extension agent assigned to Oklahoma. Taking the charge from Knapp, Bentley began hiring new agents for every county and securing new demonstration farms. In time, the effort would come to be known as the Cooperative Extension Service and, at least in Oklahoma, Extension Agents would be renamed Extension educators. You think of the university you think of educators. Our roll in extension really is to take the university to the people to teach and train them, to engage with them in solving their problems. An agent on the other hand often carries the connotation of somebody who's enforcing the regulations. And we don't do that. The demonstrations farms that Bentley set up are long gone, replaced by an extension office in every county. And while educators still work closely with agriculture producers, their mission is to help every Oklahoman We're here at the county extension office in McCurtain County. Um, we're located in the county seat Idabel. We're located inside the McCurtain County courthouse. So we are seen as an office of McCurtain County, but at the same time we're an office of the State of Oklahoma and Oklahoma University. Well, the extension office is part of our, the courthouse and we rely on extension. I mean that's to me that's one of the most important departments that we deal with because that deals with the people. We deliver four kinds of programs: Agriculture, and Family Consumer Science, and 4-H, and Rural Development. Here in our office we're fortunate that we are fully staffed with three professional educators. Um myself I work with agriculture, horticulture, and rural development issues. We have a 4-H agent: I grew up right here in McCurtain County. Went to high school in Haworth, which is just southeast of here. I was really fortunate to to be a recipient of the McCurtain County 4-H Hall of Fame. That's the highest honor here in McCurtain County that you can receive in the 4-H. And so 4-H to me has just been a life long dream of mine since 9 years old. Of course McCurtain county being the third largest county in the state of Oklahoma, I have about 14, 14-15 clubs. I oversee all the volunteers, meet with them, make sure everything is going good, and I oversee your 4-H kids. And I want them to have someone like I had when I was in 4-H. A good role model, you know someone to go to for help, for record books. I mean there's always something going on shooting sports, to different project areas, to different activities, at the state level at OSU in Stillwater. It's in the smile on their faces when they win something', or you push them to do something' that you know they can do, and they achieve that goal. When their smiling' and the have kind of their chest bowed out is what I say. At the end of the day, that's what makes me happy, what makes me smile, what makes me glad to be really fortunate to be in this position. Extension has a history of being known for our assistance of ag producers, but we're much broader than that. Particularly when you think of what we do with Family and Consumer Sciences. Oh, I love my job. I get to work with families. I get to work with young children and adults of all ages. I may be teaching a diabetes education workshop one day, and answering parenting questions the next. Um, I may be in the schools teaching character education, or also in the schools teaching nutrition programs. Today we had a diabetes education group meeting. I've seen a lot of change in people's lives with the diabetes education. some of my members have come back and stated um how they've improved their blood glucose levels significantly, how they've lost weight and all by following the information that they've gained from this programming. When people come into the office and end up honing in on a particular question, they generally like to leave with something in their hand that they can use in more detail and remember some of the specifics and read it again as they leave. So our fact sheets are still a major part of our program. They're a means of providing typically form four to eight pages of in depth information on a particular subject. What's in a fact sheet has ben refereed, approved and reviewed and is scientifically based information. Soil tests are one of the done at all of our county offices, one that I think perhaps we are most known for. where people bring in their soil samples, we send them into OSU, to the lab. For $10, a customer can receive a basic soil test. We get lots of questions. How much fertilizer do I need to put on my tomatoes? How much do I need to fertilize my pecan trees? How much lime do I need to put on my pasture? Their purpose is to get the proper application, that one: saves you money so that you don't over apply fertilizer we don't need to; and secondly: saves the environment, there's no reason to put extra fertilizer on there that washes down into our streams and creates environmental problems. So it's trying to manage fertilizer, the land and the environment correctly. Without OSU, Extension service the county would really be hurt if we didn't have extension service. And I feel like money is well spent to the taxpayers. While Knapp and Bentley were establishing a federal extension service, Oklahoma State University, then known as Oklahoma Agricultural and Mechanical College, was also establishing programs to help local farmers and ranchers. The relationship between the federal and state programs was not always cordial, but each side made an effort to work with the other. Bentley's agents would meet at the new college whenever possible to help promote harmony and friendly relations. As its name suggested, Oklahoma A&M already had a large stake in agriculture. It was a land-grant university. The land grant system was set up under the Lincoln Administration in the 1860s to make it possible for every citizen to have access to an education. And at that time, the only real universities around were private, and the only people that went to those universities were the privileged. Lincoln thought everybody ought to be able to go to college and that it would be good for the country. The Morrill Act was passed in 1862, but it would be another 30 years before the government established a land-grant university in Indian Territory. What the land grant refers to is that the federal government had a lot of land in every state, and the bargain was that we'll give you land to build your university, but that university must focus on certain areas, and those areas were agriculture and mechanical, and in the early days, military for male students, but it goes on to say not to the exclusion of the cultural arts. Oklahoma A&M began in 1890. A second Morrill Act would create a land-grant system serving African-Americans in Oklahoma and establish Langston University seven years later. The campus of Oklahoma A & M College was located on the grounds of Oklahoma Agricultural Experiment Station in Stillwater. Created by the Hatch Act, the Experiment Station researched local crops and agricultural techniques for Oklahoma producers. But even at the very beginning they would send out bulletins and eventually began sending out circulars. These went out to local communities. They would occasionally have demonstration farm events and invite- invite people to Stillwater and to the experiment station. One such event was the Farmer's Institute. These were usually two-days of lectures and discussions, and offered free of charge. Later, these were taken over and organized by the State Board of Agriculture. Once Oklahoma A&M was established, it too began a series of short-courses and moveable schools on agriculture. Farmers could hear more than 180 different lectures and participate in sixty afternoons of practical work. Discussions on Saturday were open to all, whether they had taken the courses or not. Modern Extension continues to works hard to keep Oklahoma producers up to date. One-day events called "field days" demonstrate the latest advances in agriculture. And short courses still provide both novices and seasoned producers the information and training to improve their profitability. Extension is good to provide non-biased researched information to the taxpayers of Oklahoma. I am participating in the master cattleman program that is at the extension office here locally. Well, master cattleman Program was developed by Oklahoma State University to help update, and to, in the case of people wanting to get in the cattle business, a chance to introduce them. We work all the way from finances to genetics to nutrition to carcass merit to marketing. And we go through those step by step and covering the different tech, different options people have in those areas and try to help them provide them with the knowledge where they can make the choices they need to improve their operation. My operation that we have here is a registered seed stock business that focuses on fertility. We produce bulls and replacement heifers for the commercial cattleman. I started when I was 8 years old with buying my first registered cow. Then we kind of stayed in it as my family did, and as my father passed away I just continued to carry on the family business. I think what the class helps me with on is applying science to good business, where to spend the money so you get the best pop out of the dollar you are working with. We can get, in the case of the class that we are teaching now, thirty-forty people together that are involved, they're interested. They get to meet once a week, and not only do they hear the presentations but they also get to discuss amongst themselves and feed off each other in their quest for knowledge and quest for improving their operation. And the group setting allows a lot of times for new concepts and new idea to come out that my challenge you from doing things that your dad did, or doing it the way you've always done or because you've been trained that way. But it allows you to look that and say Gee I didn't think of that thought, and implementing that, and people will give you feedback. Yeah I did that and the difference is made in their program. You know we've shared a lot of stories and I think as a whole I think we've learned a lot. I've learned from them, I hope they've learned from me. At one time, when I started out I worked with that were all very close to the farm and to the land if you will. Today, we have people three, four and five generations away from the farm. A lot of people have a great desire to deal with livestock and to be involved with the land. We always talk about we provide non-biased research information, and so we are one of the few sources you can come to if you are looking to buy a new product or try a new technique or whatever, that we're not trying to sell you something. There are certain amount of lectures that you can go to and they can cost you eight to nine hundred dollars for a three day class and they can teach you about grazing, forages and all that, but the extension service gives you all of that at a minimal low cost. You know, we're just trying to give you the facts and all the insight on what would be the best in your situation, and we provide that information and let you make the choice. Well, technology changes, the science is changing some, and the thing that has remained constant is the cow. For me, its the overall picture is being a better manager of what all I'm doing, so that I'm profitable, so that the product that I produce for the commercial cattleman that he is profitable. Probably the big thrill is really when I get to go out and work with producers and be able to give information and advice that they utilize to make their lives better and that's really a good feeling to know we're helping other people. The 4-H programs introduce students to the Extension Service and, derivatively, Oklahoma State University, really, from the very beginning. And in my opinion, it's one of the great leadership programs in this country that's run through the extension offices. Although generally everyone appreciated their efforts, early extension agents often had difficulty convincing older farmers. They found it was the younger farmers who were willing to experiment with new ideas. To improve the future of agriculture, the next generation of farmers needed to be involved. In 1908, the college began encouraging Boys' and Girls' Agricultural Clubs throughout the state. The first extension clubs for boys and girls were corn and cotton clubs. The boys and girls were given seeds and instructions for caring for how to take care of those. Within a year 569 boys and girls had joined. Four years later, more than 15,000 young people were engaged in club work. The college also sponsored a number of contests with sizeable prizes offered by the Farmer's Institute, Board of Agriculture, A and M and other cooperating agencies. As the youth programs grew, other clubs were added. Extension began a tomato club for girls in 1912, and a pig club one year later. Club members competed at the county level, with the winners exhibiting at local county fairs. Some would win trips to the State Fairs in Oklahoma City and Tulsa. All the Boys' and Girls ' Clubs were eventually brought together under one name-- 4-H, standing for head, heart, hands and health. Today, 4-H Clubs encompass 100's of program areas. Local children can show off winning produce and exhibits at county and state fairs. Livestock shows throughout the state allow young people to learn the value of raising and caring for animals. 4-H members also participate in ATV safety courses, shooting sports, and even science and technology. The livestock side, shooting sports, that's always going to be there, like it always has been. And it will always be strong. But I think I can see also us just changing with the world kinda what's going on out there today. And one of those programs is the robotics competition, FIRST Robotics. FIRST stands for For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology. Today we are competing in the Oklahoma City FRC Regional. We are competing against 62 other teams. We have spent 6 weeks designing and building robots to compete here. This is about our 8th year to compete. And it started out with coach Larry McWilliams and coach Stewart Boys with the dream of wanting to bring STEM the Science and Technology to our kids teach them real world life skills. Earlier in January we had a kick off where they gave us a kit of parts and they gave us what the challenge would be. Every year it's a different challenge, and they make it hard on purpose. Bumping and it's a lot of action. They call it a sport for the mind, and these kids just thrive on it. The challenge is to throw a 24 inch ball up into a slot in a wall. The competition is 2 minutes and 10 seconds long. We have a 10 second autonomous period. We also have a two minute tele-operative period where we have drivers that can actually take control and will drive around and try to score points and play defense on other people. It's a catapult on wheels basically. It takes the ball in and then it basically then it. That's basically all it is a catapult on wheels. As programmer, I basically tell the robot what to do when its running b y itself in autonomous mode, or when its controlled by our drivers. What they do here, they can't learn in a classroom. They're under the stress of a short period of time, they only have so many weeks to build this robot. They're under the stress of working with other kids. They've got teamwork, they've got to learn how to work with each other and come up with an idea. Something that they experience in real life, they experience while trying to build this robot together as a team. One of the major things I've learned is leadership, and being able to get a group of people to follow in one direction and to keep them focused on a certain goal. 4-H has definitely helped in my leadership skills. They've helped train me to give me a good idea of what a real leader needs to do. Not just telling people what to do, but also showing and then mentoring, and also doing things when something needs to be done. Originally, you know we started out as a strong agriculture based, but now we have young people that are studying so many more things. We have young people that focus on entomology, or photography, or science and nutrition. Its just another avenue to teach young people life skills and responsibility and help them become determined in a positive way to prepare them for life. If agriculture was going to be a profitable enterprise, educating the farmer or even his children was not going to be enough. Early extension agents realized they would have to help the farmer's wives as well. Girl's clubs already provided education on cooking and sewing. But the spouses of farmers were critical to success of the farms. Women ran the homes and often dealt with finances while the farmers were in the field. Unfortunately, while the husbands could attend short courses, the wives had little opportunity to travel. Extension would have to bring the knowledge to them. Much of the education centered around canning, both as a way to use surplus produce from the fields and gardens, and provide an extra source of income by selling it to neighbors. It was really important. To have some way to preserve that food once you had an abundance at certain times of year, there needed to be some way to save for the times of year when there wasn't an abundance. In 1912, Bentley hired eleven women extension agents with the mandate to form home demonstration clubs. The following year, he added 4 more, including Annie Peters of Boley, Oklahoma. The first female African American extension agent in the United States. She did canning for a great many years. In fact, um, some of her innovations in canning lasted several decades after she left. Now, one thing I think was really interesting in her picture, it shows her with glass canning jars and most of the rest of the country were using tin, and , solder to keep them closed and her exhibit looks fabulous in my estimation. Much of the work that Annie and all the women extension agents did now falls under Family and Consumer Sciences. FCS educators help all Oklahomans and their families with a variety of health and safety programs, tailored to meet the needs of each county. We have what we call our program advisory councils, and we meet with those people twice a year. And they basically consist of people out in the community. They're the people that know what the needs are for the county. So not only do we identify the issues that are out their in Oklahoma county, but we also decide what programs are we going to do, how are we going to attack it and how are we going to make an improvements. So for example in Oklahoma County, there is a lot of problems with obesity, diabetes, heart disease. Once we identify that there's a problem and that we're going to go out and do some different programs to our different audiences we umm, of course being with Oklahoma State University, we provide research based information, so we get that information from our state specialists which is on campus. The total wellness class started a couple years ago, and it's offered several times throughout the year. We have a dietician that's bilingual that does it in Spanish, and we also have a dietician that does it in English. We really have a high risk of developing diabetes or heart disease, and also there is a lot of obesity among the Hispanics in the U.S. So this type of classes are really really important. We had an amazing teacher, Dianna, and um she did really good. We learned a lot of things that we eat like tortillas, rice, things like that, we learned what effect that has on our health. We can still eat it or just eat less portions or we cook it differently than it is traditionally cooked. So, every time I teach classes I realize there is a lot of need for these classes in the Hispanic community, cause they need to learn to identify the different food groups, and they learn what is healthy, and what is not and you know what things we can eat more than what other foods we need to eat less. Certain recipes or things that like as Mexicans we eat, how to change it a little bit. We can still eat what we normally eat, but change the way we cook it. They always tell me like oh Dianna thank you so much for teaching us, you know we are eating healthier, we are eating more fruits and vegetables now, we are eating less you know fried food, or you know we try not to go out to eat as much and jus cook at home. And they always say you know my family, my dad, my little sisters are doing the same. They are eating healthy because of us. And with the total wellness class we've seen family members that come together and takes the class and its wonderful because it provides that accountability partner that they need at home. When they are getting ready to sit at the dinner table at home, maybe before that when they are getting ready to umm go grocery shopping they can do that together and sure they make healthy choices. Yeah, we're so grateful that this was available, because this was free. So it was something that we could do. We are thankful to OSU, I would say for providing this. What you hear of the soil in the 1930s was that it probably never should have been broke out. Its sandy and with enough moisture it'll grow anything now with enough moisture and fertilizer. My folks moved here in '49, and it was 7 years before they had a profitable wheat crop. It started to be having the same devastating effect that the 1930s drought had had it was starting to shape up to that extent. The folks had been through some pretty hard times just as rom being in the atmosphere they were raised in. and there've been a lot of improvements in agriculture at that time that prevented it from becoming as bad as the 30s was, but still a lot of issue that were similar to it, that had it continued on, it would have indeed developed into the magnitude of what the 30s were. And it had, to a degree here already. This quarter would have been about 60 acres of it would have been in alfalfa. And they were one of the pioneers of raising alfalfa in Oklahoma. And they had a lot of hay. It was very, a good product at that time also, and it was selling and becoming real popular, and all of that type of agriculture simply dwindled off and was coming to an end. The alfalfa simply couldn't survive the drought conditions. And so it was it was destitute times. There was not only the wheat crop we raised, there was no feed grains, there was no cattle feed or hay, all of that was had just come to a halt as far as agriculture was concerned around here. Several years of drought in the Southern Great Plains was a concern for the country and made news around the world. So much so, a special visitor came to see it first hand. So there was things they wanted spruced up when they found out it was going to be, special guests coming. And so dad was out repairing the barn, it had a tin roof and there was a piece of it that was loose, so he was out there pounding that down. Then he has a cousin that lives around the corner, and he had property here and he was up and down the road all the time too. He went by and say dad out there on a January day out there nailing the tin down on the roof of the barn and he just, e just couldn't figure out what was wrong with him, that he was out there doing that in that kind of weather. And then the next week he found out. January 1957, President Eisenhower visited this farm, which is the original homestead where my grandfather homesteaded and at that time my parents, Carl and Frances Peoples, lived here and with us, four children., and we were raised on this farm. And it was a result of the drought that President Eisenhower, made that visit and accompanying him was the Secretary of Agriculture and local agent which we knew from our days in 4-H at that time as Bill Taggart, Dr. Taggart. Well it was part of a long drought tour that he took, and of course he flew. In '57 they had the , we watched the airplanes that come in to the airport which is located a mile to the southeast of us here. And they had stopped in locations in Kansas, this one in Oklahoma, and Texas panhandle, New Mexico, and in Colorado. And we knew that they were coming. We were watching, and they pulled in the driveway and none of the motorcade knew that they were going to stop here. So when they pulled in the driveway and stopped, then they all started all piling out, and this motorcade ran clear to the corner down there, about half a mile. He stopped and visited with the family as a whole, we all and shook hands with all of us. 75 or 80 feet out behind us here, is where they all stopped and that would have been the ground there was typical of all the rest of the wheat land that was here, about 100 acres. Then they visited out here, they proceeded back up towards the house, pulled out of the driveway and left. He spoke to mom again on the way back, and she told him , 'I wish you had time to come in for a cup of coffee,' and he replied 'well, maybe I can come back and do that sometime.' One hundred and fifty-two days after the Presidential visit - there was a wheat crop for the first time in years. Experts say the drought was more intense than the 1930s, but it was the change in agricultural practices that lessened the impact. Research from the USDA and land grant universities, was delivered to producers through programs like the Cooperative Extension Service. These programs showed producers, on their own land, how simple changes could make a difference. We've had extreme long droughts in our past: the 1930s, the dust bowl drought, um the 1950s which was statistically for the body of the state the worst drought on record. We had a period of wet times from 80s and 90s, then into the 2000s. We've gotten into these short severe episodes that we've seen like in 2005-2006, 1995-96, 98, and then this drought. There are a couple other counties that has been severely impacted by this exceptional drought that we've been under for close to three years, plus or minus. An area that would include mostly Tillman county, Jackson county, and Harmon county, and as you look at the southern border of Oklahoma, the Red River as it comes in, then the hundredth meridian, which is the border with the Texas panhandle, that's the counties that are the very farthest southwest counties, which has very severely effected our overall production. We've really been impacted agronomically here, the last three years, for sure especially cotton on the irrigation side for sure. Then in '13 or course this last year we've failed a majority of our wheat acres here due to that record setting 5-6 freezes starting the end of March, extending to the first of May out there, in conjunction with the drought that's already going on. My operation consists of wheat and cotton and cattle sometimes, depending, we haven't had any the least few yews due to the drought, mainly just hadn't had anything for them to eat. Surprising that how much we have done on what little moisture that we have had. But I mean it still makes you feel good, when that seed jumps out of the ground and you know you've done all you can to make it grow. Oklahoma growers and U.S. growers are optimists, and or they really wouldn't be in the business of agriculture. You got to keep thinking next years going to be better. It is optimism that helps a small cotton plant that requires nearly 20 gallons of water in its lifetime, to grow in the hot and dry conditions of Southwest Oklahoma. Whether its irrigated or dry-land the cotton crop this region relies on needs moisture to grow. Typically if you look at a long-term average based on National Ag statistic Service data, Oklahoma is going to plant somewhere between two hundred and three hundred thousand acres. Well we don't have any ground well water here, so all of our irrigation comes from Lugert-Altus Lake here north of town, and we haven't any irrigation at all here in the last two years and , And in '11, we didn't have enough to make a crop. It's been really tough for a lot of our farm families. And it's been tough for the folks that are that are really close to the business. We've experienced a rough three and a half years down here, bit I can't brag on our producers enough down here for their initiative in hanging in there and staying in with their cropping systems. Advances in plant genetics and technology have helped producers improve efficiency, allowing them to manage their crops when the Oklahoma wind blows, and takes the moisture with it. You can bring someone back alive, that's been dead for 20 years they couldn't believe it, how things have changed. In no till its conserving moisture, in the fact that you haven't disturbed the soil, and you've got your residue which is, which helps slow down evaporation and things of that nature, and quite literally for me personally it was the difference in getting a stand and not. And then the amount of acres that we can cover with a self-propelled sprayer in one day, would just blow their mind. I mean Brandon can start early one morning and spray a thousand acres easily a days time. I mean no body can fathom that that maybe framed and plowed 20, 30, 40 acres a day or maybe was following a horse. That's just amazing. I would submit that Oklahoma State has been right there working with getting this technology to the farmers as quickly as possible. What type of research can we work with, what type of extension program can we work with that shows results from research that addresses their problems. The different varieties of our seed and how we're making 25-30 bushel crops on very little rain. I can remember when I first started running a combine I mean 30 bushels, we didn't think we was ever going to get better than that. I mean 35-40 we were doing back flips, now I mean we're making that in a drought. I say that kind of laughing, but I know wit the technology that's out here, if we can get some timely rains, we can easily get 70, 65, 70, 75 bushels on dry land. And I don't think that guys before me or even anywhere near before dad ever thought you could do that on dry land. Researching what works, then educating citizens about it, is the backbone of the land grant mission, and is more important than ever. Gary has a right to go do anything he wants to on it as far as the plots that he wants to do. And I feel that it its very important to continue what the extension office is doing in our county and I'm sure every county feels that same way, because we've sure gleaned a lot of benefit from it. I've put out fertility trials, forage trials, and herbicide trials, within or county to generate data here in the county that is directly applicable to these guys here. So I have a strong field component where I'm actually out in the field with our producers. Gary does so many tests on, especially grasses and wheats, mixing chemicals and doing different things on it, it works really good when we go talk about it, then just apply on a large amount of acres where he's done it on these test plots. We wouldn't know if it would work or not if he hadn't used it. And that's where I think Extension service serve s a farmer real well, because they can do that trial and error and then bring it out on a larger scale out on our farms, and we can see if it works then. And having the ability to just pick the phone up and just call him and ask him what's working in a certain scenario. So I'd ay its very very beneficial to the farmers to have the extension service the way it is today. Well we've got some folks coming down to ride on one of our extension trains, the kind of train we had in 1914. It showed a little bit about what extension did in the past and what its doing today. This is the centennial of extension and we've been around for a hundred years. Bentley was used to riding the train for Extension work. In 1904, he was asked to join the agricultural lecture train in Texas. Although farmers often complained about price gouging when shipping crops, they were important customers for railroad companies. The railroads provided extension agents with free passes for their job. In Oklahoma, it was a little different. Early extension agents were on their own when traveling to local farms or the occasional agent's meeting. Most used their personal horse and wagon, with a few riding horseback. Even in 1909, when Agent Pinkley of Kiowa County used the first automobile for demonstration work, his progress was slow due to Oklahoma's bad roads. He made some successful relationships because he would provide rides for people going from one point to another but then other people resented him because they said his car scared their horses. In 1914, the Extension service tried their own "county fair on wheels." Demonstration trains crossed the state, carrying a wide array of livestock and expertise. They would have about eight to ten cars with various capacities on different cars. They would have maybe poultry on one car, swine on another car. Home demonstration agents working on other cars. And I know one year one train saw over 52,000 people. And so I think train stations were real collecting points for the community. And a lot of communities. 1914 extension used the technology that was available at the time. And how do you get and reach the people? As communication technology has changed through time, so have extension and the way we deliver our programs. You know through the last century you have the evolution of radio and TV and now finally today you have a whole array of electronic media. Extension today has two regularly produced TV programs, SUNUP you know and OKLAHOMA GARDENING. I think what's great for SUNUP as another tool for extension, is that we have the ability to take our expertise and knowledge from the university and from our network all across the state, put that together and get it out to producers in real time as it's happening. Our goal at OKLAHOMA GARDENING is to deliver research-based content to the people of Oklahoma. And this really embodies the mission of extension. We deliver content through a variety of media. Primarily television, but also through social media outlets. Throughout the state our extension educators field a variety of questions from the community members. Many on horticulture related topics, including production of fruit and vegetables in the garden and maintaining our trees and shrubs and turf areas. Our aim though educational programming is to connect the vast resources available at the university to the people of Oklahoma and connect them to our area specialists and our fact sheets. And of course we're into using electronic media, and video conferencing, blogs and tweeting and we've actually produced a number of apps the most popular one may be the MESONET weather app. As the first decade in the new century wore on, friction between the federal Extension and state systems increased. Attempts were made to merge the two, but always broke down over funding and who was in charge. In Oklahoma, relations between the agents were generally friendly. But the state's and college's agriculture efforts were overseen by the Board of Agriculture, a very political group that didn't appreciate federal intervention. Then in 1911, after losing his wife a year earlier, Dr. Seaman Knapp, the father of Extension, died. Three years later, a compromise was struck on the federal level in the form of the Smith-Lever Act, combining the two systems. The U.S. Department of Agriculture would provide funding and support to the State Cooperative Extension System that would in turn support county offices. The word cooperative in "Cooperative Extension" means that we receive funding from all three federal, state, and county sources, and that it is a cooperation between those three forms of government that funds extension. The question for Oklahoma was: who would run the state system, Bentley or someone appointed by the State Board of Agriculture, which had become the governing body of Oklahoma A & M? Previous attempts to reach an agreement between the two had failed, largely due to College President J. H. Conner. But the Board was deeply unpopular, and through a vote of the people, was replaced with one appointed by the Governor. On May 8th, 1914, President Woodrow Wilson signed the Smith-Lever Act into law. That August, Bentley moved into Morrill Hall on the campus of Oklahoma A & M, just in time for the building to burn to the ground. Although much of those early records were lost, Oklahoma Extension went on to thrive in the new state. When the Smith-Lever Act was passed in 1914, one of the expectations was that the federal government was going to provide resources, monetary resources, that it needed to be matched by the state government and the local government. It's a 3-way partnership we've got and it's served us very well for the last 100 years. The triangle basically represents the three missions of the land grant college: teaching, research and extension. And we refer to them in that order, because that's the way they were enacted by our forefathers and government in Washington. Three acts actually created those missions. The first act being the Morrill Act in 1862, which formed the university, the teaching arms. About twenty-five years later, the Hatch Act established the experiment station and the research arm. And then finally about twenty-five years later, in 1914, we established the third side of the triangle, Extension. Smith-Lever also created an Extension Service in the state's other land-grant, Langston University, that is still operating today. Langston, just like Oklahoma State University, is a land grant institution, and so we are funded through the land grant program for our cooperative extension program. We extend programs throughout the state and throughout the region and questions that farmers might have for us. One change Extension has seen in the last 100 years is assisting in community development. County and state educators work with local civic leaders to help diversify their economy and prepare for the future. Whether it's expanding small and home-based businesses, training elected officials or providing strategic and community planning, Extension is an important partner to rural and urban Oklahoma. Bentley would come to be known as "Daddy" Bentley by his employees. He left the Extension service in 1916 for Washington DC, only to return to the Oklahoma A & M a year later. During his tenure, he would work an old friend, Bradford Knapp, son of Seaman Knapp. Bradford served as college president from 1923 to 1928. In 1930, at the age of seventy-three and still an extension agent, Bentley suddenly died. I think Bentley would be surprised at the extent of the extension network now. I think that he would be amazed at the way we can reach people in so many different ways that he would have never imagined. I actually think the best years of the Extension Service are ahead of us. The world is not as it was in 1914. My home county is not as it was in 1970. We give the Extension Service the ability to change, to grow, to meet the needs out there. And given that flexibility, the Extension Service will. And as we project out from now on, here this population is projected to get to 9+ billion people just in the next 30-40 years. The challenge that we face is between now and 2050, we have to double food production The incredible intense impact of that population on land, the amount of water available and the continuing changes that are occurring in climate that we are seeing today, the droughts that have been occurring. The main the main thing that I love about extension is that I am confident that I can tell people that if they want the true answer the accurate answer they need to come to the OSU extension office. Well we often talk about there's information and there's knowledge. you can find information all over the place, and trying to make sense out of it is the key of what extension does. Plus, backing it with the scientific research, and experimentation to know which of those ideas and information and ideas actually work in your own local environment. To have a face associated with that information and to help tailor that to you or to your family or to your children, is something that extension has a long 100 year history of providing, and I think that it is important to continue that for the next hundred years. [music] [Extension Creed Song]

References

  • Martis, Kenneth C. (1989). The Historical Atlas of Political Parties in the United States Congress. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company.
  • Martis, Kenneth C. (1982). The Historical Atlas of United States Congressional Districts. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company.
  • Congressional Biographical Directory of the United States 1774–present

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