Latitude / Longitude:
36°6′6″N 96°52′53″W / 36.10167°N 96.88139°W / 36.10167
Central (CST) (UTC-6)
Ingalls is a ghost town in eastern Payne County, Oklahoma, about 10 miles (16 km) east of Stillwater. The town was settled as a result of the “Unassigned Lands” land run in 1889, and had a post office from January 22, 1890, until October 31, 1907. It was named for Senator John J. Ingalls of Kansas. During the 1890s the population peaked at about 150, then began to decline.
Ingalls became notable as the site of the Battle of Ingalls on September 1, 1893, which was a shootout between U.S. Marshals and the Doolin-Dalton gang. Three deputy marshals and two residents were killed, one of the residents being killed while shooting at the marshals. Several people were wounded, including two of the outlaws, and one outlaw was captured. A stone monument stands at Ingalls on Ash Street, an unmarked street by the fire station, a short distance from where one of the deputies was shot. A new post office, named Signet, Oklahoma, was established on a site northeast of the old Ingalls townsite on June 21, 1921, and became part of a new community. The residents protested and the name was then officially changed back to Ingalls.
Today, the population is an estimated 150, like in its heyday. The land lots are mainly owned by three families that have lived in or near the town for at least 70 years, the Radford/Sharptons, the Burtons, and the Mathesons. Every Saturday night, seniors with ties to the community gather at the Ingalls Community Center for a music show. Usually, a reenactment of the Battle occurs on Sept. 1st of every year, but many of the actors have been getting older and unable to participate.
Only a few deserted, old buildings are still present, including replicas of the Ingalls Hotel, its actual name the Pierce O.K. Hotel, a livery stable, saloon, and general store. There used to be a schoolhouse, the first Sunday school for a Baptist church, right in front of the old fire station building.