21403-t.pngStatehood! The event of Hawai''i moving from a U.S. territory to statehood in 1959 is an important link between the musical and its context in a production here in the islands. We hope that the production will prompt audiences to think about the effects of statehood, and how it shaped the identities of the people affected. From the moment the Sooners started to take over lands in the Western half of Oklahoma, they started arguing for statehood so that they could gain representation in external image arrow-10x10.png of Congress. The Organic Act of 1890 split the territory into two separate territories: Oklahoma Territory (O.T) and Indian Territory (I.T)

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Oklahoma Territory Map
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Indian Territory Map


There are had been four proposals for statehood: single statehood where the territories would be combined into one state; double statehood where the territories would be admitted to the Union as separate states; piecemeal absorption into the union; and the admission of the OT without any reference to the IT whatsoever. For fourteen years from 1891-1905, statehood conventions were held all over both territories, resulting in the Oklahoma Enabling Act of 1906, which started the process towards establishing a constitutional government for the proposed state of Oklahoma.

There was also an economic factor in settlers' wishes for statehood. Oil and other minerals were discovered in Oklahoma, which spurred the growth of cities such as Oklahoma City and Tulsa. People were pouring into the territory to create their fortunes. As people got richer, the more they wanted representation in the Congress to protect their interests Gclub.

In general, the Native American tribes were not in favor of statehood. They wanted to retain their territorial governments and control of their lands. In general, the Native Americans and the White settlers who lived in Indian Territory supported double statehood. The Native Americans feared that the Oklahoma Territory politicians would dominate policy and ignore what was important to those living in Indian Territory. On the other hand, people who owned businesses in the I.T Gclub Slot. did not support double statehood because they thought that they would have to carry the burden of the taxes because the tribes in the IT would not have to pay taxes for 25 years. As a result, business owners started to clamor for a single state.

Despite the I.T.'s attempts to create a separate state for themselves, President Roosevelt signed the Oklahoma Enabling Act of 1906, which abolished Native American sovereignty and started the process towards statehood, Royal1688 merging the Oklahoma and Indian Territories. Oklahoma became a state on November 16, 1907.

- YL