With Oklahoma’s Centennial year quickly approaching, remembering and honoring local history is in vogue, and this is a good thing. Forgetting the origins of Oklahoma’s small towns and simple beginning, would be a great tragedy for the Sooner State. A state’s character is built on the history it preserves and the lessons it learns from the past.

In Ada, residents have the satisfaction of knowing this is the birthplace of Robert S. Kerr, Oklahoma’s governor and U.S. Senator. His birthplace as well as his first grave site are in Ada. These need to be honored, preserved and shared with the community. P.A.S.T., Preserving Area Stories in Time, is a local group determined to do just that. P.A.S.T is a local group based in Ada, working to support and preserve local historical sites and artifacts. Two locations they oversee are the Little Red Schoolhouse and Campbell cabin. They also provide a walking and driving tour of Ada’s historical homes and businesses. To view upcoming projects, to become a member, or to contact P.A.S.T., visit http://past.adaok.org.

Pontotoc County’s Historical and Geneological Society is also committed to preserving local history. According to its web site, www.rootsweb.com, its purpose has been to copy and preserve the history of the county (as many of the early towns and villages no longer exist), to copy and index all grave stones in all the cemeteries of the area, and to publish them; to record biographies of pioneers; to preserve records of Indian heritage; to establish proof of family lines and preserve them in a filing system, and to copy birth, death and marriages from family Bibles. Members have copied more than 3000 tombstone records and over a thousand marriages prior to 1907. They have a historical and genealogical library of books, films and readers of which they are proud. They publish any and all data of the "roots of our trees."

The 100th birthday of Oklahoma should remind us all of the unique history this state has and the unique history our area enjoys.

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