Kansas 105

Today's Trivia (May 13)

More than a century after his death, David Payne remains as controversial as he was in life.

Payne was nicknamed the Father of Oklahoma because he was one of the first to urge settlers into what was then Indian Territory.

He would even break the law to do it.

Payne, born in Indiana in 1836, served with the Union Army for three years during the Civil War and then came to Kansas. In 1864, he was elected to the Legislature.

In the early 1870s, he settled in northeast Sedgwick County.

Several years before the great land runs into what would become Oklahoma, Payne gained national fame for his thoughts on who could claim the Indian Territory.

Believing he could claim unassigned lands through the Homestead Act, Payne began organizing settlers in the 1880s to go against government orders and homestead the territory.

On Feb. 1, 1883, Payne had organized enough people that they left Arkansas City with 132 wagons, 553 men and three women. They camped where Oklahoma City is today but were driven out by federal troops.

The next spring, Payne took 1,500 settlers into the Cherokee Strip about four miles south of Hunnewell, Kan. Again the troops came. This time Payne was put in irons and taken to Fort Smith, Ark., for trial.

He later was released.

Question: What was the name of the group that Payne organized?

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Answer to Thursday's question: Frederic Remington's works "The Last Stand," "The Bronco Buster" and "Texas Cattle in a Kansas Corn Corral" are said to have been based on his experiences in Kansas.

Check Kansas.com on Saturday for the answer to today's question.

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