Saturday, November 2, 2019

Land Rush Dreams by Vickie McDonough

I was recently on a Facebook party promoting my Land Rush Dreams series, and I was surprised to learn how many people had never heard of the Oklahoma land runs. So, let me enlighten you, in case you haven't heard of them either.

Actual Land Rush Image, public domain
There were seven land runs in Oklahoma, but by far, the most well-known were the 1889 and the 1893 runs. The first occurred on April 22nd, 1889, which led to the settling of the Canadian, Cleveland, Kingfisher, Logan, Oklahoma, and Payne counties in Oklahoma. Nearly two million acres of Unassigned Indian Lands were claimed in a single day. The terms "Boomer," Eighty-Niners" and "Sooner" were birthed during the days before this run. Now you know where the Oklahoma Sooners from the University of Oklahoma got their name. #BoomerSooner.

The Land Run of September 16, 1893, was known as the Cherokee Strip Land Run. It opened 8,144,682.91 acres to settlement. The land was purchased from the Cherokees. It was the largest land run in U.S. history, four times larger than the Land Rush of 1889. 

That's a very brief overview. The land runs proved to be too chaotic, so the government they switched over to land lotteries to settle the final Unassigned Indian Lands. In my Land Rush Dreams series, I feature both of the land runs mentioned above and the land lottery. I always enjoy mixing real-life history with fictional stories.

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Gabriel's Atonement

Land Rush Dreams, book 1
Features the Land Run of 1889

All Gabriel Coulter ever wanted was to live a comfortable life as a successful gambler, but a confrontation with a disgruntled cowboy who’d just lost his monthly pay to Gabe leads to a family man dying in his arms. Even though it was self-defense, the only way Gabe knows to get rid of his guilt is to return the money he won to the man’s wife.

Lara Talbot sees Gabe as a derelict like her husband and wants nothing to do with him--not even the much-needed money he's offered her. But as she struggles to provide for her family and makes plans to claim property in the upcoming Oklahoma land rush in hopes of finally having a permanent home, she wonders if God might have sent the meddling man to help.

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Joline's Redemption
Land Rush Dreams book 2
Features the Cherokee Strip Land Rush

Sarah's Surrender
Land Rush Dreams book 3
Features the Oklahoma Land Lottery


  1. Thanks, Vickie. I'd never heard of the Oklahoma land runs before, either.

    1. Did you ever see the movie, Far and Away? If so, you've watched a reenactment of the land run. It's a fascinating part of U.S. history.

  2. Very interesting Vickie, thanks for sharing.

  3. Vickie, thanks for sharing your wonderful series. I also am surprised more people don't know about the land runs.

  4. I am too. I figured other states would teach it as part of U.S. History.

  5. Thanks Vickie! I learning new things about that period in history, it's always so fascinating how different things were.