In July of 2009, 3 high school freshmen formed GreenTree of Tulsa as an environmental group that would help reduce the levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Our plan is to plant trees in Tulsa and surrounding areas to sequester Co2. While working on this project we came to realize that not only the planet and humans are affected, animals are also greatly affected. Climate change and high Co2 levels are severely harming the polar bear's habitats. Due to their dangerous situation, polar bears have become a large part of our project. Since July of 2009, GreenTree of Tulsa(GTOT) has planted over 2,150 trees to help save the polar bears and our environment.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Planting Trees at an Oklahoma Historical Site

We are planting trees at Younger's Bend. This is Belle Starr's homestead and gravesite. Belle Starr was an infamous female outlaw. We will be planting several oak trees and redbud trees. Redbuds are the state tree of Oklahoma. A new trail has been cleared and built to allow access to the gravesite. The trail is marked with signs pointing out the native flora and fauna. The signs are labeled in both English and Cherokee. Our trees will be planted at the cabin site and around the gravesite.

Below is some background on Belle Starr and Younger's Bend. This information was copied from the Younger's Bend Facebook page.

A Violent Death Awaits

by Younger's Bend on Tuesday, May 4, 2010 at 1:12pm

The violence that haunted Belle Starr's life started with the Civil War and the death of her beloved older brother, Bud. Her family moved from Bloody Missouri to Texas, but the violence followed. Her younger brother, Edwin Benton, would soon be slain by Texas lawmen. Belle married James (Jim) Reed. Jim had served with Bud in Quantrill's Raiders along with other notables such as the Frank James and Cole Younger. After the war, Jim had remained in contact with Tom Starr and frequently visited Younger's Bend. Among other things, Jim was wanted for robbery of the Austin-San Antonio Stage in Texas and for murder in Arkansas. He was apprehended and killed by a Deputy in Paris, Texas. This left Belle as a young widow with two young children. There are stories that Belle lived with or married Bruce Younger (Uncle of Cole Younger) after Reed's death, but there are no records of this. In 1880, she married Sam Starr ( son of Tom Starr) and her marriage was registered with the Cherokees, this allowed her to live in the Indian Nations legally. She lived with Sam in the cabin at Younger's Bend. A parade of famous outlaws would seek refuge and fresh horses at Younger's Bend. In additon to the more notable, there was also those lesser known such as Sam Spaniard, Jim French, and Felix Griffin. In 1886, Sam Starr was a fugitive and was being pursued by the Cherokee police (Lighthorsemen). He happened to be riding Belle's beloved mare Venus when he was spotted in a corn field. The officers shot the horse to prevent his escape. Sam Starr was wounded but able to run into the woods and escape capture. Belle loved this horse so much that it's likeness would later be chosen for her tombstone. Frank West, a Cherokee police officer, had been involved in the shooting of the horse. He happened to meet with the Starrs at a Christmas Dance near Whitefield. Belle was intent on seeking revenge for the death of her mare and urged Sam to take care of West. A gunfight between Sam Starr and Frank West followed. Each fatally shot the other. After Sam Starr's death numerous other famous outlaws were rumored to continue to keep Belle's company at Younger's Bend. Jack Spaniard and Jim French have both been mentioned in some sources. However, Belle lost her tribal status with the death of her Cherokee husband and efforts were made to have her leave the Cherokee Nation. Belle's status was renewed with her union with Jim July Starr, an adopted son of Tom Starr. She continued to live at Younger's Bend until her death in 1889. Edgar Watson was arrested for her murder and significant circumstantial evidence was presented in court at Fort Smith. Jim July Starr had pressed for the trial but became a wanted man on his own accord and was shot and killed in the Chickasaw Nation. Shortly thereafter the case against Watson was formally dropped. Belle's daughter, Pearl left Younger's Bend and moved to the Red Light District of Fort Smith. Belle's son, Eddie Reed spent some time in jail and then returned to the Cherokee Nation. Judge Isaac Parker (Hanging Judge) thought him to be thoroughly rehabilitated and assisted in getting him a job as a Deputy. He was attempting to make an arrest when he was shot and killed by two shotgun blasts from an ambush. Edgar Watson eventually moved back to Florida despite being wanted for murder there. He would eventually be implicated in three additional murders and was shot and killed by a Sheriff's Posse.

June 1864- Bud Shirley was shot and killed by members of the 3rd Wisconsin Cav
Summer 1867- Edwin Benton Shirley was shot and killed by Texas Rangers
Mar 1874- John Younger was shot and killed by Pinkerton Detectives
August 1874- Jim Reed was shot and killed by Texas Deputy Sheriff John T. Morris
April 1882- Jesse James was shot and killed by Bob Ford
Sept 1886- Venus (mare) was shot and killed by Cherokee policeman Frank West
Dec 1886- Sam Starr was shot and killed by Cherokee policeman Frank West
April 1887- Felix Griffin was shot and killed while stealing a horse
Feb 1889- Belle Starr was shot and killed in ambush by Edgar Watson (?)
August 1889- Jack Spaniard was hung for murder by Judge Isaac Parker
Sept 1889- Bob Younger dies in prison of TB
Jan 1890- Jim July Starr was shot and killed by Deputies In the Chickasaw Nation
Dec 1896- Eddie Reed was shot and killed while acting as a Deputy
Oct 1902- Jim Younger shoots himself
Oct 1910- Edgar Watson was shot and killed by Sheriff's Posse

Jim French moved to New Mexico and was involved in the Lincoln County War with Billy the Kid. Judge Isaac Parker would eventually bring law to the Indian Nations by hanging 89 outlaws. Of the outlaws that frequented Younger's Bend, only Tom Starr, Cole Younger, and Frank James would live long enough to die of natural causes.