Monthly Archives: December 2017

The Tulsa Series — Tulsa, The Magic City

Be A NovelistTulsey Town

In 1905, an oil strike forever transformed the small cow town, known as Tulsey Town, into a mushrooming metropolis–the Magic City. The strike, however, was not in Tulsa itself, but rather twelve miles south of town.

A man named Robert Galbreath, following the lure of black gold, traveled to Indian Territory in 1901 (the area did not become the state of Oklahoma until 1907) along with his partner, Frank Chesley.

The Glenn Pool

Four years later, the two drilled the Ida E. Glenn No.1, the discover-well of the Glenn Pool, Oklahoma’s first major oil field. It was soon to become the richest field the world had ever seen.

It quickly earned the name of the Glenn Pool, because it was a lake of oil. Black gold gushed from the ground, so much so that storage tanks couldn’t be constructed fast enough.  In places, the oil literally stood hub deep. Production peaked about 1907 with more than 100,000 barrels a day. The field grew from eighty acres to eight thousand acres during the first year and ultimately became roughly four miles long and two miles wide. (Difficult to imagine, right?)

Magic City to the Oil Capital of the World

So, you may be wondering, if the oil strike happened twelve miles south of the city, how did Tulsa become known as the Magic City?  (And later as The Oil Capital of the World.)

The answer is simple.  It’s called publicity. No matter that the strike was down the railroad tracks a ways, clever, far-sighted businessmen in Tulsa were determined to make Tulsa the center of all the action.

In time, a number of aggressive Tulsa promoters were renting fancy rail cars and traveling around the country touting all the reasons for people to pack up and move to Tulsa.

As mentioned, they first dubbed it The Magic City; but by 1912, they settled on the “Oil Capital of theBe A Novelist World.”  The name stuck and the city was still carrying the name when I first moved to the area before the oil bust of the 1980s.  And Glenpool is still a flourishing little town down Highway 75 from Tulsa. (The second n was dropped somewhere along the way and Glenn Pool became Glenpool.)

Simmering Cauldron

By 1921, when my Tulsa Series books takes place, over fifty millionaires resided in the city.  (Do names like J. Paul Getty, Harry Ford Sinclair, and Waite Philips ring a bell?)

As the city outwardly gleamed and glistened, beneath the surface was a simmering cauldron about to boil over. That’s where the Tulsa Series books come into the picture.

Photo Credits:
Tulsa Offices, 1909 — Beryl Ford Collection/Rotary Club of Tulsa, Tulsa City-County Library and Tulsa Historical Society.

Glenn Oil Pool — Oklahoma Historical Society

Clean Teen Reads

Book #1 (Tulsa Tempest)

(Click the cover for more information.)

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You can read Chapter 1 of Tulsa Tempest right HERE!

Free Download! 

Clean Teen Reads

Book #2 (Tulsa Turning),

(Click the cover for more information.)

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Clean Teen Reads

I’ve launched a YouTube video series that I call (for obvious reasons!) The Writing Life These episodes reveal the ins and outs, and the ups and downs of a published author.

Be sure to subscribe so you won’t miss a single episode.

Clean Teen ReadsBe A Novelist

Tired of the struggle writing your book? Need a helping hand? Norma Jean’s Coaching Services may be the answer you’re looking for. Fill out the questionnaire on the page and let’s see if we’re a right fit. A FREE consultation gets the ball rolling. (Or the pen writing!) Click HERE!

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How the Tulsa Series Came to Be

Be A NovelistFascinated

When I first moved to the  Tulsa area as a young married, I remember hearing bits and pieces about the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921.  Nothing specific. Very few details.  I later learned that the most I heard back then was fabrication.

The story fascinated me even all those years ago.  Not a morbid fascination; more like an incredulous fascination – wondering how such a thing could have happened.

Need Historical Fiction

Fast forward to the point where I am writing novels for Barbour Publishing.  I was writing inspirational romances and each time I finished one, my editor would remind me of how he needed historical fiction.

I let his plea go in one ear and out the other.  Contemporary fiction was much easier – much less research.

When I finished the fourth contemporary title for Barbour, I remember feeling as though I was dusting off my hands.  That was the last. I was through. Now I would  go back to writing juvenile and teen fiction – my first love.

I Saw Tessa

It was a Labor Day weekend; I had sent off the final edited copy of the fourth contemporary title to my editor. It was late when I went to bed.  But I couldn’t sleep. I kept thinking about the Tulsa Race Riot. I saw a young girl dressed in a plain cotton housedress, carrying a basket, walking through a crowd of angry gun-toting men into the courthouse in downtown Tulsa.  That was little Tessa Jurgen, but I didn’t know her yet.

I was hooked.  Lights on. Pen and paper. That night I wrote the thumbnail sketches for all four books in the Tulsa series. My editor loved them and within a week I had a four-book contract in my hand.

My Exhilarating Journey

Thus began a wonderful, exhilarating journey back into the history of Tulsa. I made a transfer from earth to seventh heaven.  I love the stories; love the characters; love writing historical fiction. Surprise.

Be A NovelistI also became addicted to research.  Ever study an oldBe A Novelist Sears catalog?  (In the picture on the right — a new innovation — enclose your car! They called them winter sides.)

How about a studying 1921 Tulsa High School yearbook? I did, and I loved it. I have to say, I was on a two-year high as I created these 4 books.

In my next blog, I’ll share a little more about the history of the riot itself. Stay tuned!

Clean Teen Reads

Book #1 (Tulsa Tempest)

(Click the cover for more information.)

Be A Novelist

 

You can read Chapter 1 of Tulsa Tempest right HERE!

Free Download! 

Clean Teen Reads

Book #2 (Tulsa Turning),

(Click the cover for more information.)

Be A Novelist

Clean Teen Reads

I’ve launched a YouTube video series that I call (for obvious reasons!) The Writing Life These episodes reveal the ins and outs, and the ups and downs of a published author.

Be sure to subscribe so you won’t miss a single episode.

Clean Teen ReadsBe A Novelist

Tired of the struggle writing your book? Need a helping hand? Norma Jean’s Coaching Services may be the answer you’re looking for. Fill out the questionnaire on the page and let’s see if we’re a right fit. A FREE consultation gets the ball rolling. (Or the pen writing!) Click HERE!

Clean Teen Reads

Be A Novelist