Route 66 icon in Foyil

Monday, August 29th 2005, 9:58 am
By: News On 6

Foyil's Totem Pole Park is a Route 66 icon. It's a little off the beaten track, but if you like quirky folk art, it's a must see.

News on 6 reporter Rick Wells went to Rogers County to take a look at the world's largest totem pole.

It’s the world's largest totem pole and Carolyn Comfort is a volunteer with the Rogers County Historical Society. The totem pole park in Foyil has been her project since 1992. "Now there's nothing inside there. We have a sign in there that has the dimensions and the facts."

That's where we got the idea, that this totem pole is the biggest in the world, the sign says so.

You can look up the inside to the top. When folk artist and wood carver Ed Galloway build this he did it in stages. Carolyn Comfort: "It's in six levels." Galloway started the project in 1937. It took him 11 years to finish it and there are other totems too, a tree totem and an arrowhead, with the faces of the chiefs of the 5 civilized tribes. Carolyn Comfort: "Mr. Galloway loved wood."

He did and you can see how much with a peek inside the fiddle house, a building Ed Galloway built in 1949 to display his wood working talent. He made fiddles. Carolyn Comfort: "he had 300 on display at one time." Each of these fiddles is different, each one made of a different kind of wood.

The road out front, once a main road to Grand Lake, is way off the beaten track now, but the guest book shows visitors to Ed Galloway's handiwork from all over the world. Carolyn Comfort: "he didn't have a lot of money to work with but he did have a lot of creativity." Visitors are glad that he did.

The Fiddle House and gift shop is open every day from 11 to three and noon to four on Sundays. The park has a small pavilion and some picnic tables that would be perfect for a family gathering.

The area can be reserved by calling 918-342-9149.