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Gore Jail

Location Class:
Built: N/A | Abandoned: ~1960s
Status: Abandoned
Photojournalist: John Rupp

The Gore Jail is as textbook as a calaboose comes, made of concrete with tiny windows including two cells. Presumably built in the time frame of 1900-1920 this small cell would have been used for drunk and disorderly’s, petty theft, and other small crimes

One story I did find while doing my research was from February 5, 1963 told of this: Muskogee Police Monday night were looking for a man described as 19-20 years old, weighing 150 pounds and wearing blue jeans and a light blue shirt. Police headquarters were notified about 3 p.m. Monday of a man’s escape from the jail at Gore. The report said the youth, being held on a theft charge was believed to be heading for Muskogee. The escapee was identified as Robert Dandridge.

“I was raised there by the jail and many times would take people locked up water. Most of them were drunks and were dying of thirst when they sobered up. And I do remember Robert Dandridge, he wasn’t a bad criminal just trying to grow up. We use to use it as a storm shelter” remembered Dixie Callison.

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Emily Cowan

Emily was brought into the Abandoned OK Team in December of 2019. “I’m not gonna lie I fangirled a bit. My first published post I was ecstatic, I felt like I finally had the right audience for my work. The opportunities that came with it made me love the website even more. I remember my first interview with a couple at Waukomis Christian Church. They had bought and restored the 1897 church and insisted on keeping the original sanctuary despite being advised on moving it. We talked with them for at least a good 40 minutes about the church, the abandoned Waukomis Middle School beside it, and the towns other disappearing buildings. They even rang the bell for us that has sat in the bell-tower for the last 120 something years ago. We could tell they were just as passionate about preserving Oklahoma’s dwindling history as we were. When interviewing people and hearing the first-hand stories and recollections of a place and seeing how a person connects to a building, it forms a connection between not only you and that person but yourself and that building.”

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