President Teddy Roosevelt Signing Statehood Proclamation
“Oklahoma is now a state,” declared Theodore Roosevelt, President of the United States, as he signed the statehood proclamation at 10:16 o’clock on the morning of November 16, 1907. The birth of the new state of Oklahoma was attended with little ceremony. Only a delegation of government clerks from Oklahoma and newspaper men were in the cabinet room as witnesses.
The delegation formed around the cabinet table and fifteen minutes after 10 o’clock, the door leading to the executive private office was thrown open and the President entered, taking a seat at the head of the cabinet table. An eagle quill pen was arranged for the signature and became property of the Oklahoma Historical Society.
The President picked up one of the new blotters which lay on the cabinet table to dry his signature, but he had not completed the operation before an alert person with gray hair, white tie and nervous smile, cried out, “Mr. President, give me the blotter.” The blotter was presented with a smile to Albert Hammer of Enid, Oklahoma, who had made the request, a clerk in the general land office.
The White House telegraph rooms were directly connected both with Guthrie and Oklahoma City and the second the President attached his signature to the proclamation, the information was flashed to the new state.
Images are copyright of The Oklahoma State Senate Historical Preservation Fund, Inc. and the artist. Please contact Matt Duehning at 405-524-0126 or Matt.Duehning@oksenate.gov for further copyright information.