On September 17, 2016, the Public Library of Enid and Garfield County was designated a National Literary Landmark  in honor of Marquis James (1891 – 1955). 

Marquis James, an American journalist and author, won two Pulitzer Prizes for biography: in 1930 for "The Raven: A Biography of Sam Houston," and in 1938 for "The Life of Andrew Jackson, 2 volumes.”

Photo of Marquis James by Miss Mary Cromwell

His formative years were in Enid. At the Enid library, the Marquis James Room contains permanent displays, photographs, and archival items about James. His papers, manuscripts, and correspondence are in the Library of Congress.

The dedication was held during Enid's annual Cherokee Strip Days celebration. The year 2016 was the Centennial year of the Pulitzer Prizes. The Friends of Enid Public Library hosted a reception following the dedication.

At the dedication, Michael Wallis, award- winning author, historian and biographer of the American West, served as Master of Ceremonies. Paul Vickery, Ph.D, History Professor at Oral Roberts University presented a Chautauqua- style portrayal of Marquis James. Special Guests: Marquis James’ grandchildren Karen Hoover & Chris Norwood; grandniece Christine Shockey Katcher; grandnephew Peter Shockey; and great- grandnieces Lisa Johnson & Merida Hines- Tyler.

An educational booklet about Marquis James was printed in conjunction with the dedication. Oklahoma State University Library Professor and FOLIO President Karen Neurohr coordinated and edited the booklet which was produced to commemorate the Literary Landmark dedication, celebrate Mr. James and his writing, and help inform Oklahoma high school students in Enid and the surrounding area about Oklahoma’s rich literary heritage.


Sponsors and Partners:

Public Library of Enid and Garfield County

Friends of the Library of Enid

Friends of Libraries in Oklahoma (FOLIO)

Oklahoma State University Library

Oklahoma Humanities

Friends of the Oklahoma Center for the Book

Enid Arts

Visit Enid

Enid Chamber of Commerce

The Marquis James Grandchildren and Cousins

Family of Mr. & Mrs. J. Lee Cromwell and Miss Mary Cromwell

Gary and Sheila Brown

Enid High School

Oklahoma Historical Society

Cherokee Strip Regional Heritage Center

Pulitzer Prize Centennial

Oklahoma Library Association

United for Libraries