Omar K. Benedict
First Newspaper Owner/Publisher
In Hobart, OK

The following is an exerpt from an article by Mr. Benedict, July 7, 1925

“In the beginning, Hobart was a wild frontier town in a raw country, and while it was settled by as fine a class of young men gathered anywhere, like all new boom towns, it attracted likewise, it’s least desirable citizenry.”

“Four weeks after the opening on August 6, 1901, there were 27 saloons, 2 ‘variety ‘ theaters of questionable character, filled with ‘painted ladies’ and gambling in the back of all. Some of the hardest characters in the west claimed Hobart their town in the early days, and many a fortune was won and lost over night.”

“It seems odd that we would tolerate that, doesn’t it? But custom plays a large part in times and communities. It is good for the world at large that the saloon and gamblers and his followers are gone. Gone with the coyote and rattlesnake and the long horn steer, that were only a few short years ago monarch of the domain where Hobart now nestles in the center of a happy, peaceful, home-owning, home-loving people. Gone with the disappearing mirage that lured thirsty men to dry death and dry rot as their bones bleached on the wide prairies where they fell.”

“Gone are the tintinnabulations of the faro check, and in their place, soft singing of gospel hymns, as men turn their thoughts from the god of chance to the God in heaven. Gone are the gunmen, gone are the customs – gone forever, is the west we knew in Hobart in 1901 – and it’s all for the best.”

“The people on the homesteads in the county were sung to sleep at night by the coyotes howl, and awakened by the barks of the county’s first settlers, the prairie dog.”

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Web Page November 22, 2002
Copyright 2002-2003

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