Filth of Any Kind

by Jack Blair


“That there is hereby created in the City of Tulsa, an office to be known as City Scavenger.”

With those words, a new standard in hygiene was established in the Indian Territory.

Today, the City of Tulsa spends $70 million a year to maintain a sanitary sewer system, and another $25 million to collect and dispose of trash. In 1904, the City paid 10¢ per dead cat and $2 per dead mule.

As we begin to think about a new refuse and recycling system for Tulsa, it’s reassuring to know we’ve been cleaning up “cesspools,” “privies,” “noxious objects” and “offal” for more than a century.

Courtesy City Council of Tulsa Library