A Landing a Day

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Posts Tagged ‘Jay Oklahoma’

Eucha, New Eucha, Old Eucha and Jay, Oklahoma

Posted by graywacke on July 13, 2019

First timer?  In this formerly once-a-day blog (and now pretty much a once-a-week blog), I use an app that provides a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48).  I call this “landing.”

I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town or towns I land near.  I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. 

To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is) please see “About Landing” above.  To check out some relatively recent changes in how I do things, check out “About Landing (Revisited).”

Landing number 2450; A Landing A Day blog post number 886.

Dan:  Today’s lat/long (N36o 22.625’, W94o 49.814’) puts me in NE Oklahoma::

My local landing map shows nearly all of my titular towns:

More about the lack of just plain Eucha in a minute.  Speaking of Eucha, my readers must pronounce it correctly.  Here goes (and repeat after me):  OO-chee.  You may laugh at the local pronunciation, but it’s actually accurate.  More about that in a bit.

Here’s my streams-only map:

As you can see, I landed in the watershed of the Spavinaw Ck; on to the Neosho River (7th hit).  Although not shown, the Neosho makes its way to the Arkansas (134th hit); on to the MM (950th hit).

Some nice round numbers here.  Landing 2450 and Mississippi River watershed hit 950.

Moving on to Google Earth (GE), here’s where I asked the Orange Dude to set up to check out my landing:

And here’s what he sees:

I couldn’t get a decent SV look at Spavinaw Ck, but got a view of Lake Eucha (formed by a dam over the Spavinaw):

And here’s what the OD sees:

I was able to find a GE photo by Priscilla Wenzel of Spavinaw Creek just upstream from the reservoir:

So let’s check out the various Euchas (the OO-chees).  First, we’ll take a look at Google Earth:

There’s plain ol’ Eucha!  It turns out that GE’s Eucha is StreetAtlas’ New Eucha, and StreetAtlas shows nothing where GE shows New Eucha.  I’m going with GE.  Got that?  No?  Don’t worry about it . . . 

Let’s start with Eucha.  From Wiki:

Eucha, pronounced “oochee,” was named for Oochelata, a principal chief of the Cherokees. Eucha, well known for its Indian culture, often has Indian taco sales.

Two things.  First, the chief’s name was Oochelata; ergo, the OO-chee pronunciation is excellent.  Secondly, funny how “Indian taco sales” made it to Wikipedia.

Moving on to New Eucha.  Wiki has nothing to say.

Moving on to Old Eucha.  Wiki has nothing to say.

Oh, well.

Time to move to Jay.  Wiki:

Jay (pop 2,500) is home to numerous Cherokee tribal offices and a health clinic for the Delaware District of the Cherokee Nation.  The city is celebrated as the Huckleberry Capital of the World and has been host to the annual Huckleberry Festival each July 4 weekend since 1967.

The Huckleberry Festival is a big deal – it lasts for three days and has many events that guarantee fun for all, including a frog jumping contest.  Here’s a pic from a June 2018 issue of the Grand Lake News:

The young lad is holding “Froggy,” who won the “largest frog” contest at the 2017 festival.

Back to Wiki:

Jay was named for Jay Washburn, a nephew of Stand Watie.  Around 1908, the exact location of the center of the county was surveyed, with the intention of founding the County Seat.

The survey pinpointed allotment land belonging to Thomas Oochaleta, a full-blood Cherokee. Since acquiring title to a full-blood’s allotment would require a lengthy federal legal procedure, the committee shifted their attention to the allotment adjoining Oochaleta’s on the east, a parcel belonging to committee member Claude L. “Jay” Washbourne.

As a mixed-blood Cherokee, Washbourne was exempt from the federal policy restricting the sale or transfer of his land. He gave ten acres on which to construct a town. The committee quickly constructed a frame building to serve as a post office, and then submitted the required three town names for consideration. The names submitted were “Center,” “Jay,” and “Washbourne.” Postal authorities chose Jay for its brevity.

Stand Watie (Jay’s uncle) was Wiki-clickable:

Stand Watie (Cherokee: Degataga, lit. ‘Stand firm’) (1806 – 1871), was a leader of the Cherokee Nation, and the only Native American to attain a general’s rank in the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War. [Geez.  I didn’t realize that Indians fought on the Confederate side!]  He commanded the Confederate Indian cavalry made up mostly of Cherokee, Muskogee and Seminole, and was the final Confederate general in the field to cease hostilities at war’s end.

Under Wiki’s “Notable People” was one Buzz Wetzel (great name and cool pic):

Charles “Buzz” Wetzel (1894 – 1941) was a pitcher in Major League Baseball who played briefly for the Philadelphia Athletics during the 1927 season. Listed at 6 ft 1 in, 162 lb., Wetzel was born in Jay, Oklahoma.

Wetzel was 32 years old when he entered the majors on July 27, 1927, and did not have a decision or any strikeouts. Wetzel posted a 7.71 earned run average in two games, including one start, giving up four earned runs on eight hits and five walks in 4 ⅔ innings of work. As a hitter, he went 1-for-1 with a run scored. He pitched his final game on July 28, and never appeared in a major league game again.

At least he made the Bigs, and hey – he batted 1.000!

And check out his Philadelphia A’s jersey.  There must be a story about the elephant, eh?  Well, it turns out that back in 1901, Ben Shibe started a new Philadelphia team to compete (for fans) with the Phillies.  In 1902, John McGraw, the already-very-successful owner of the Baltimore Orioles and then the New York Giants, was asked what he thought of the A’s.  “White Elephant,” he quickly retorted.

For those of you who aren’t sure of the meaning of the term, here’s the Google dictionary’s definition:  “a possession that is useless or troublesome, especially one that is expensive to maintain or difficult to dispose of.”

McGraw kept playing up his quote, and the press picked up on it.  Eventually, the A’s figured what-the-heck, and embraced it as one of their logos in 1909.  They tried to distance themselves from it in 1919, but in 1920 went all in:

There you have it.

Also from Jay is Tommy Morrison “former world heavyweight boxing champion.”  A few points of interest from Wiki:

  • Born in Jay, Morrison (1969 – 2013) spent most of his teenage years in Jay.
  • He began boxing in 1982 (age 13, using a false ID) and had a 202-20 record.
  • He began his professional boxing career in 1988 (at 19).
  • In 1989, Morrison had 19 profesional wins and no losses, 15 by knockout. Actor Sylvester Stallone observed one of Morrison’s bouts. Stallone arranged a script reading and cast Morrison in the movie Rocky V as Tommy “The Machine” Gunn, a young and talented protege of the retired Rocky Balboa. Morrison took a six-month break from boxing to work on the movie in 1990.
  • In 1993, he managed to fight George Foreman in a heavyweight title bout. He won a 12 round decision.
  • After three successful title defenses, he lost a bout (and the title) to Lennox Lewis, as he was knocked out in the sixth round.
  • He died of AIDs at age 44.

I’ll close with this GE photo by Howard Hansen of an Eucha Lake sunset:

 

That’ll do it . . .

KS

Greg

 

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