39¢ Oklahoma Statehood
Issue Date: January 11, 2007
City: Oklahoma City, OK
Quantity Issued: 25,000,000
Printed by: Ashton-Potter (USA) Ltd
Printing method: Lithographed
Perforations: Die cut 11
In 1803, the United States obtained the Oklahoma region from France as part of the Louisiana Purchase.
Starting in the 1820s, the federal government removed the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Seminole, and Creek tribes to the area. These Indians, called the Five Civilized Tribes, were promised that they would own their lands and be protected from white settlement.
After the Civil War, however, Congress forced the Tribes to give up the western part of their land because they had supported the South. Finally, the government bought over 3 million acres in central Oklahoma from the Creek and Seminole tribes and opened over half of it for settlement. At noon, on April 22, 1889, 50,000 settlers raced to stake their claims in the first of six Oklahoma land rushes.
Congress established the Territory of Oklahoma in May 1890, separate from Indian Territory. The Five Civilized Tribes proposed that Indian Territory be made a state, but Congress refused.
Instead, Congress combined the two territories, their fertile farms, rich grazing lands, and developing oil fields, into one state. This stamp commemorates the centennial of November 16, 1907, when Oklahoma became the 46th state in the Union.