Death of Bettie Ligon ~ November 21, 1911
The state of Oklahoma was being rushed by its politician's and corporate leaders so the natural resources of the state could be exploited.
The Choctaw and Chickasaw Nation's were to benefit from a great deal of the wealth that was to be thrown their way based on allowing companies like Standard Oil and the multitude of railroads to intersect the territory, all providing funds to the leading men and families in the respective nations.
Yet the publisher's of the Daily Ardmoreite, a paper that was not sympathetic to the plight of blacks or Indian Territory freedmen understood clearly the importance of this challenge to the tribes and the country.
The addition of this many African-Native people could in their eyes go against everything they understood about race and how the descendants of former slaves and slave owners should be viewed when it came to sharing in the land and possible revenues from the natural resources located in their respective nations.
The difference was large enough to make a difference and quite possibly interfere with the interest of the coal, asphalt, railroad, oil and gas corporations that were licking their lips to establish their business in the territory.
Fifteen hundred people could be the difference between giving up sixty thousand acres of land as opposed to four hundred and eighty thousand acres of land; this would affect the profits of oil production by requiring royalties to the owners of that land. That much land wealth would have created a class of substantially wealthy blacks that could have challenged the status quo in the new state of Oklahoma?
The latter number would have posed a possible threat to the development and exploitation of what we now know was and is a huge amount of wealth based on those same natural resources in the land.