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Heritage Books on bookshelf

Hennessey Heritage Collection


The Hennessey Heritage Collection contains representative titles from the late 1800s to the present, in a decade by decade format with emphasis on historical materials pertaining to the North Central Oklahoma region north of the Cimarron River. The collection has over 1,700 books, many of which were originally donated by residents of the region for the library, and is a read-only collection. Books may be checked out for reading in the library's reading areas, but may not be taken from the library.

A Rider of the Cherokee Strip, is located in the Heritage--1930's section. George Rainey's The Cherokee Strip, and No Man's Land: The Historic Story of a Landed Orphan are also found in the 1930's area. History and government texts he co-authored in 1910 are also in the collection.


Title page of Indian Signs, pre-1900's The most unique acquistion is Indian Sign Language by Captain William Philo Clark, known as "White Hat" by the native tribes. While engaged in the Sioux War of 1876-77, he gained the confidence of his scouts and gathered information for this book which became the definitive text on Indian sign language.

The book in our collection is dated 1885, the year after Captain Clark published his treatise, and was found in a barn near Hennessey. Captain Clark is linked to Hennessey history through the Cheyenne who surrendered to him after their flight from the Darlington Agency near present day El Reno.