Okla. to get law enforcement museum


The Associated Press

CHANDLER, Okla. — An Oklahoma Law Enforcement Museum and Hall of Fame is planned for Chandler, home of one of the state's most famous lawmen.

Plans unveiled Tuesday indicate the project could cost from $6 million to $8 million. It would be built next to an old armory off State Highway 66.

Deputy U.S. Marshal Bill Tilghman homesteaded in Oklahoma in the late 1800s and was a longtime resident of Chandler.

Carl Reherman, the president of the museum's board of directors, said temporary quarters for the museum in downtown Chandler could be open early next year.

"This has been a dream for a long time for many people," Public Safety Commissioner Kevin Ward said.

Tilghman was elected Lincoln County sheriff in 1900 and served as state senator for a year before taking a job as Oklahoma City's police chief in 1911.

He retired in 1914 and made a motion picture, "The Passing of Oklahoma City Outlaws." He was appointed marshal of Cromwell in 1924 and on Nov. 1 of that year was shot and killed while escorting notorious federal prohibition agent Wiley Lynn to jail.

Reherman said the board wants to develop the museum and hall of fame in temporary downtown quarters and then seek donations and grants for a permanent home near the armory.

"Then you can go to foundations, you can go to wealthy people and say to them, 'Look what we've done and we need your help to move that next step,'" he said.

Lt. Gov. Jari Askins, who chairs the state Tourism and Recreation Commission, said the museum "will be a great destination point and certainly being on historical Route 66 gives an opportunity for those who travel that historical route to have an opportunity to stop and learn about Oklahoma."

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