The Election of May 1, 1889

The Election of May 1, 1889 (HM2MHV)

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N 35° 28.053', W 97° 30.855'

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— The '89er Trail —

A slate of candidates supported by the Seminole Town and Improvement Company, including the temporary mayor William Couch, was elected at the polls on Wednesday, May 1.

At the mass meeting on April 27, after the compromise survey was adopted, a group of residents backing the Seminole Town and Improvement Company proposed the election of a temporary mayor. William L. Couch, the prominent Boomer and trustee of the Seminole Company was elected. Two days later he published a proclamation calling a general election for May 1 with two wards and polling places, one north and one south of Main Street.

When election day arrived, citizens confirmed Couch as mayor and chose a city council and other officials of a provisional government. With the advantage of an organization that nominated candidates, the Seminole Company and its backers were the overwhelming victors.

Many settlers didn't realize at the time that they were setting in motion policies that favored lot claims by illegal sooners, and the sale of lot certificates for the profit of a private business. A rival faction quickly emerged - known as Kickapoos - that challenged the Seminoles at every turn.

Photo captions:
Top left: William L Couch was elected-temporary mayor on April 27 and confirmed as mayor in the election on May 1.


Division of the Oklahoma Historical Society

Middle: This was the voting booth of the north ward, in a view looking north at Broadway and Main. Today this lot is occupied by a 35 story office tower. Oklahoma Images Collection, Metropolitan Library System of Oklahoma County
Year Placed2018
Placed ByOklahoma City Community Foundation, Wiggin Properties
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Thursday, October 31st, 2019 at 8:01pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)14S E 634806 N 3925908
Decimal Degrees35.46755000, -97.51425000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 35° 28.053', W 97° 30.855'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds35° 28' 3.18" N, 97° 30' 51.3" W
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Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling East
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