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Louisa "Lula" Estelle Brannon Briscoe Letters

Louisa “Lula” Estelle Brannon Briscoe Letters
Creator: Louisa “Lula” Estelle Brannon Briscoe
Dates: 1893-1910
Quantity: 3 inches
Accession: RC2010.008


This collection features the transcriptions of 250 letters written by Louisa Brannon Briscoe from Sugden, Indian Territory, to her mother in Washington state. The letters discuss daily life and work as a postmistress in Sugden. The letters are dated 1893 through 1910 and provide Lula’s perspective into life in Indian Territory.


Lula married Robert Willis Briscoe on December 13, 1901, at the home of the bride’s family in Indian Territory. They were both eighteen years old when they married, according to the Chickasaw Nation Marriages website. The couple had five children: Julia Edna, Anna Fern, Mary Louise, Robin Willis, and R.W. “Joe.”

Lula’s letters are to her mother, Juletta “Julia” Ellis McNaught Brannon, who was married to Thatcher Washington Brannon who died from pneumonia as a consequence of being crushed by a bale of hay while working at Grogan’s Store in Sugden, Oklahoma. Julia had six children with her husband. Their names are Louisa “Lula” Estelle, Carl, Frank Thatcher, Winnie Davis, Elmer Patton, and Juletta Augusta. Julia, as a widow, left Indian Territory with her five other children to live with her bachelor brother, Lewis Augustus “Gus” McNaught on his homestead in the Big Bend Country, Douglas County, near Hartline, Washington. They lived there until Julia’s son Frank was old enough to work, and then they moved to Seattle. She boarded people and eventually was able to build a home.

Scope & Content Note

This collection includes two 5.25 diskettes and two 3.25 diskettes that contain transcriptions of 250 letters written by Louisa “Lula” Estelle Brannon Briscoe to her mother between 1893-1910. Letters were mailed from Sugden, Indian Territory/Oklahoma. The transcriptions were made by students at Washington State College, Pullman, Washington, around 1990 under the direction of a college professor and Robin Briscoe Diplock (Lula’s daughter). The transcriptions have been digitized and are available by clicking this link.

Additional information about the family:

The youngest child Juletta married Leo Duncan and the couple moved into the Briscoe home in Seattle. When they chose to sell the home and move into another house, Juletta moved the family letters and photographs with her. After she died, the family archives were found by her niece, Bonnie Duncan Peters, and given to Robin Briscoe Diplock for safekeeping.

Thatcher Brannon and his brother, William I. Brannon, had many business interests in the Wichita Falls, Texas, and Indian Territory area, including the Purcell Electric and Water Company with J. Taylor Bradley. William I. Brannon died in El Reno on August 2, 1949 and is interred in Oklahoma City. He staked a claim in the opening of the Indian Territory.

Julia Brannon had Patent #28 for Lots #5 and #6 in Block #33 of Sugden with the Choctaw Seal, June 5, 1906, and the Chickasaw Seal, June 12, 1906 showing receipt for the final payment of $19.52 on October 28, 1905. This made the full amount of the $78.12 purchase price. The patent shows it was recorded in Book 11, page 339, file #6339 on September 1, 1906.

Louisa “Lula” Estelle Brannon Briscoe:
Born September 13, 1883, Texas; Died February 4, 1920, Wichita Falls, Texas
Robert Willis Briscoe:
Born July 13, 1883; Died March 25, 1942
Juletta “Julia” Ellis McNaught Brannon:
Born December 7, 1860, Iowa; Died March 30, 1934, Seattle, Washington
Thatcher Washington Brannon:
Born January 31, 1845, Kentucky; Died January 6, 1902, Indian Territory

Subject Terms

Personal Names
Alcorn, Mattie
Alexander, Dixie
Bird, John
Brannon, Juletta “Julia” Ellis McNaught
Brannon, Thatcher Washington
Briscoe, Louisa “Lula” Estelle Brannon
Briscoe, Robert Willis
Compton, Arthur
Davidson, Jessie
Gibson, C.P.
Goodwin, Joe
Griffith, Lora
Hearne, Jesse
Holland, Jack
Harding, John
Harris, Charlie
Johnson, Tom
McNaught, Lewis Augustus “Gus”
Miles, Orville
Parker, Bert
Sayers, Frank
Tucker, Dave

Subject Headings
Grogan & Bird General Merchandise
Indian Territory
Sugden, Oklahoma

Processing Information

The Louisa “Lula” Estelle Brannon Briscoe Letters was donated to the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum in 2010 by Bonnie Duncan Peters.

This is a small collection.

Preferred Citation

Louisa "Lula" Estelle Brannon Briscoe Letters, Box ##, Folder ##, Dickinson Research Center, National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Container List

Series 1: Louisa "Lula" Estelle Brannon Briscoe Letters

Please see the scope and content note above to access the digitized transcriptions of the letters.

Box Folder Folder title/Description
1 1 Transcribed letters, 1893-1910
1 2 Duplicate transcribed letters, 1903-1904
1 3 Two 5.25 diskettes and two 3.25 diskettes containing the transcription files, c1990.

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