OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - A vintage railroad train carried state dignitaries, some in turn-of-the-century attire, to the former state capital of Guthrie Thursday for two days of ceremonies that will culminate with a re-enactment of Oklahoma becoming a state 100 years ago.
Oklahoma joined the Union on November 16, 1907.
The "Centennial Express" chugged out of the downtown Santa Fe Depot at 10:06 am with about 400 lawmakers, state officials and others on board 10 rail cars for the 45 minute trip to Guthrie.
Gov. Brad Henry, his wife, Kim Henry, and two of their three daughters, Baylee, 8; and Laynie, 14, were among the last people to board the train.
"We brought the kids, because I can't think of a better way for them to experience history than to re-enact it," said Henry. "It's very, very exciting."
Those aboard will be taking part of or witnessing a ceremonial legislative session that will include the presentation of the Seal of Oklahoma to the mayor of Guthrie.
On Friday, Guthrie will be the setting for the re-enactment of Statehood Day events, including the announcement of the presidential proclamation, the gubernatorial inauguration, the inaugural parade and a ceremonial wedding between Miss Indian Territory and Mr. Oklahoma Territory.
Guthrie was the capital of Oklahoma until the seat of state government was moved to Oklahoma City in 1910.
The "Centennial Spectacular" at the Ford Center
in Oklahoma City will climax Friday's celebration, featuring scheduled performances by such Oklahoma entertainers as Vince Gill, Reba McIntyre, Toby Keith, Garth Brooks, Carrie Underwood and The Flaming Lips.