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Gerry Grimes

#Sold - Why They Ran
Why They Ran

 My wife and I are �Oklahomans� although we now call Georgia

home.  We both grew up in Oklahoma City and we still feel the

tug from our roots in that state.  Part of our heritage is that we

both had great-grand parents who participated in one of the

seven land runs which opened the territory to settlers in the

late 1800s.  As school children, we celebrated these

occurrences every April 22nd, which is the anniversary of the

first run that took place in 1889.  It was a school holiday where

we were encouraged to attend the various parades that

marked the day with marching bands, floats, politicians

in open cars, and countless numbers of horses and riders. 

As I grew older though, I began to wonder why the

people actually made the run (I also began to think

about the American Indians who had been forced

to settle in Oklahoma and then had their land taken away again

for some of the runs � but that is a subject for another time).

  After all, the land was hard and the climate was, more often

than not, harsh.  Yet, the people came, and at the designated

time rushed to claim their homesteads of 160 acres.  Recently,

we were in the area of Perry, Oklahoma which was settled

during the run of 1893, and I found part of the answer to the

question that had plagued me for so many years.  Near a

highway west of that town, there was a large tree with cows

grazing in its shade.  I was struck with the realization that over

a 100 years ago, someone had the vision of seeing the potential

of the land despite all of the hardships that would have to be

endured.  �Why They Ran� is my tribute to their foresight.


This painting is a watercolor, painted on 16" x 12" 140# cold

press paper.  The original has been sold.


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