Oklahoma History

On this installment of ST, we're joined by our old friend and colleague, Jeff Martin, a local writer who's also the coordinator and creator of the popular Book Smart Tulsa reading series, the fiction editor at This Land, and an occasional commentator for this program. Jeff's newest book, just out, is an fun-to-read trade-paperback collection that brings together many works of short (make that "very short") fiction exploring "an Oklahoma of the mind," so to speak.

Over the past four decades, the efforts of the Cherokee Freedman to gain full tribal rights within the Cherokee Nation have, by turns, burned or simmered, so to speak; today, this issue is now being pushed back and forth in our federal court system. On this installment of ST, a review of such matters as we welcome back to our program Hannibal B. Johnson, a Tulsa-based author, attorney, and human-rights activist. Johnson tells us about his new book, "Apartheid in Indian Country?

In 1901, the first-ever oil well in Tulsa (from the Creek word, "Tallasi," meaning "Old Town") was established; the city itself had been officially incorporated in 1898. In 1905, the discovery of the fabled Glenn Pool oil field occurred --- and a boom town was born. And not just any boom town, but a petroleum-driven city-on-the-go, as Tulsa's population climbed to more than 140,000 between 1901 and 1930. On this edition of ST, we revisit the pivotal decade in this remarkable growth spurt as we discuss a new exhibit at the Tulsa Historical Society (or THS).

We are happy to welcome the acclaimed author (and fifth-generation Oklahoman) Rilla Askew back to our show. Askew received a 2009 Arts and Letters Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and she is a three-time recipient of the Oklahoma Book Award. Her latest novel, "Kind of Kin," is just now being published, and she joins us on ST to chat about this work.

On today's edition of StudioTulsa, we're pleased to welcome back an old friend, Michael Hightower, who lived and worked in Tulsa for about two decades, starting in 1980, and who, for most of that time, owned and presided over Council Oak Books. Now based in Charlottesville, Virginia, Hightower joins us to talk about his new novel, "The Pattersons," a work of historical fiction as well as modern-day sociological commentary that occasionally draws on Hightower's own life story.

On today's program, a chat with the bestselling Tulsa-based author and historian, Michael Wallis. Back in January, as part of the long-running Tulsa Town Hall Speaker Series, Wallis addressed a capacity crowd at the Chapman Music Hall in the Tulsa Performing Arts Center. His talk focused on what it means to be an Oklahoman --- on the character, history, lineage, goals, misdeeds, and accomplishments of the people of the Sooner State. It was a speech that drew much applause, rave reviews, and numerous tributes in the weeks that followed its delivery.