Monday, December 12, 2016
Oklahoma Hall of Fame Honors State’s 109th Birthday
Duke Ligon of Oklahoma City founded Mekusukey Oil Company, LLC, more than 45 years ago. As he continues to direct its mineral explorations and operations, he additionally serves on the boards of directors of other major oil and gas companies in the region. As a philanthropist, Duke Ligon supports a wide variety of cultural and historical organizations in and around Oklahoma City, including the Oklahoma Hall of Fame and Gaylord-Pickens Museum as a member of its board of directors.
The hall of fame and the museum celebrate the rich heritage of the state and the contributions of its many notable citizens. November 2016 marks the 109th anniversary of Oklahoma’s admission to the Union, and the museum scheduled a Statehood Day festival on November 12. In addition, leaders planned a November 17 banquet and ceremony honoring new inductees into the hall of fame. Since 1927, more than 600 Oklahomans have received this accolade.
The word “Oklahoma” comes from the Choctaw words for “people” and “red.” Oklahoma, formerly known as Indian Territory and Oklahoma Territory, officially became the 46th state on November 16, 1907. The territory names reference the tragic days when Oklahoma was the site of forced relocation of Native Americans from the east, exiled along the Trail of Tears in the first part of the 19th century.
The state, however, has made significant progress in the modern era, and has distinguished itself for its perhaps unequaled degree of integration of Native Americans into everyday civic life.