A vast prehistoric sea that covered what's now northwestern Oklahoma colored the soil a deep red-brown -- and left a few other surprised as well. Like the cedar-flecked canyons in Roman Nose State Park, carved by receding water, or the Alabaster Caverns, the world's largest gypsum-lined cave. Shifting sand dunes tower 40 feet high at Little Sahara State Park and the 4,973-foot-high, lava topped Black Mesa near Kenton was created by an ancient volcano. The mesa, the state's highest point, has long been a have for wildlife and for hikers -- some of them bigger than others, as nearby dinosaur footprints testify. The prairies were once dotted with tipis; northwest Oklahoma were the winter campgrounds for the Cheyenne-- the last great herd of buffalo on the Oklahoma plains was spotted near Fort Supply in the 1870s. Two decades later, the largest of all the land runs took place when the Cherokee Outlet was opened in1893 to settlement. In a single afternoon, 100,000 men and women raced to claim 160-acre quarter-sections; some of their great-grandchildren still live on original homesteads. In Aline, the Sod House Museum shelters the only remaining sod house in the state, built in 1849.
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Dedicated in 1987, the Memorial Wall commemorates those men and women since 1887 who tamed Northwest Oklahoma, survived its natural disasters, and preserved the land for all to enjoy. The memorial honors veterans of all wars and tornado victims, and also displays etched maps of the counties.Woodward, OK Memorials