Historic Mattie Beal Home
Open Thursday - Sunday
12:00 to 3:00 p.m.
(Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and the month of January)
Historic Mattie Beal Home Celebrated Centennial Event 2009 - 2010
Oklahoma Centennial 1907-2007
Dr. Lynn Musslewhite
One hundred years ago Mattie Beal Payne and her husband, Charles Wilson Payne, stood on a height overlooking the booming new city of Lawton. The land around them belonged to Mattie who had won the right to claim it in the land lottery of 1901. The Paynes planned to build a beautiful mansion on this site, a showplace reflecting their dreams for this new society. Now, a hundred years later, hundreds of visitors joined the Paynes and Mattie’s friend Florence Alling on the grounds of that mansion as they reminisced about the years gone by since the mansion was built. Each of the three characters had a different point of view about those years, and although their stories intertwine, each gave the audience a fresh look at the frontier experience.
“Mattie’s Place,” a dramatic production sponsored by the Lawton Heritage Association, was performed on the grounds of the Mattie Beal Home, 5th and Summit, on Friday, August 3rd at 6:30 and Saturday, August 4th at 2:00. The reader’s theater costume drama, authored and directed by Dr. James Brock, was accompanied by music provided by Pro Musica. Brock, who also wrote and directed the Lawton Centennial production, “Oklahoma Opening,” has become very fond of Mattie Beal. “I want the audience to like Mattie Beal. She was an intelligent, far-sighted, and civic-minded woman,” says Brock, “She was quite a gal.”
Brock, who spent time as an actor and dancer in New York, has encountered many gal and guy characters in his years as drama teacher, actor, dancer, choreographer, and author. He taught for a number of years at Tomlinson Junior High School, and since his retirement has taught at Cameron University and continued to be active in the Lawton Community Theater.
The Mattie Beal Home is open for tours at the times listed on this website.
Centennial Celebration Photographs
by Charles Ellenbrook
Ralph Blodgett, former president of Lawton Heritage Association, welcomes guests to "Mattie's Place", an Oklahoma Centennial Celebration.
Lawton Pro Musica provides music to "Mattie's Place", a dramatic production written and directed by Dr. James Brock.
"Mattie's Place" actors are Neil West as Charles, Teresa Jensen as Mattie and Melissa Horn as Mattie's friend Florence Alling.
The Lawton Pioneer Women assisted in tours after the production. Here one pioneer descendant, Mary Lou Nance, is talking to Mattie Beal descendants, Granddaughter Marjorie C. Dees (center) and Great granddaughter Leah-Anne Janway on the right.
Marjorie Dees and Leah-Anne Janway during the tours after the performance.
Dr. James Brock, author and director of "Mattie's Place", discusses the successful performance with Dr. Ralph Blodgett, former president of Lawton Heritage Association.