In early 1947, a new Henryetta company, McGinnus and Graf, decided to start strip mining just east of town in what would be Henryetta’s first active strip mine in over twenty years. 
A strip shovel had recently completed stripping property just south of Morris, so M & G decided to move it to Henryetta.  It was too big to be shipped by train or truck without disassembly, and that would be a huge job. 1935-coal-shovel
Regarding reassembly of a strip shovel, I knew back then of one that had been disassembled in northeastern Oklahoma, so the parts could be moved by truck to another location - and the reassembly had taken well over a year.  So they walked it to Henryetta – but how it walk?
Large heavy steel legs extended down each side of the shovel from the top of the “house” (operating cab) to the ground.  Each leg extended through a large “pontoon” looking object that was about as long as the house and was maybe as much as eight or ten feet wide. 
Each leg had a large platform inside the bottom of the pontoon and the legs had inside gears that extended into gears inside the pontoons.
When the pontoons were on the ground and the legs were near the fronts of the two pontoons, simultaneous rotations of the gears lifted the pontoons off the ground, moved them forward, and then set them back down so that the legs and platforms were at the backs of the pontoons. 
As the rotation continued, the legs (and the house) were picked up, moved forward and then set down so the legs and platforms were near the backs of the pontoons. 
The shovel had “walked” a step forward.  The pontoons would then be lifted by the gears and set back down so the shovel was at the back again and ready to take another step.  
Not being an engineer, I have probably explained this poorly, but anyway,  steps were taken by lifting the pontoons, moving them forward, lifting the shovel and moving it forward. 
During the “walk” to Henryetta, the shovel had to dig or strip earth only in circumstances mentioned below.
The relationship of the length of a step to the time it would take it was such that the shovel could make about a foot a minute. Say a twelve foot steep took 12 minutes, or a fifteen foot step took 15 minutes.
It had to be moved roughly 12 miles – a little over 63,000 feet.  With 1,440 minutes in a day, if it walked 24 hours a day and had no delays, it would make it in 44 days, or 66 days on a two-shift basis
But there were woods to go through, and the shovel would have to cross small hills, a U. S. highway,  the long ago K. O. & G. railroad, streams – and Deep Fork River.  Rural roads and small streams weren’t difficult,  but crossing two  highways, the railroad and the river were bigger problems. 
Bulldozers made an approach to and descent from the highway and a temporary detour before the shovel arrived.  When it arrived at the highways, the bulldozers spread a more dirt on the highway so the shovel could cross without damaging the pavement. 
Then the dozer moved the dirt off the highway as the shovel continued on its way.
The same general approach was used to cross the railroad, but that required arrangements to stop K. O. & G. travel for maybe a couple of hours.  K. O. & G. ran trains far less frequently than the Frisco, so stopping its traffic for a few hours wasn’t too big a problem.  But what about Deep Fork river?
When the shovel reached Deep Fork, it turned its house around, dug behind it and turned back around to dump the dirt in the river. 
It continued that process until it had dug a channel behind it and the river was dammed in front of it.  It got a lot of help from bulldozers in that project, but when the dam was wide and firm enough with the river behind it, the shovel continued on its way. 
I don’t recall, if I ever knew, whether they used bulldozers to dam the new channel and dig out the new dam so the river would return to the old channel, of if they left it to flow in the new channel.
It took from mid-May until late August – about 100 days.  Much of the excess over the 44 or 66 days was caused by  the crossings, other delays or holidays. 
strip-pit-earlyI don’t know if they worked 24 hours a day, but know they worked at least two shifts because it was well lit at night when some of us used to drive out to where the old Gulftown road met the highway to see it walking across farm land south of the highway and over the hill toward Kusa and Henryetta. 
I could say that night-time strip mine shovel watching was big time teenage entertainment in 1947, but nobody would believe me.
I know it got to near Henryetta, but don’t recall ever seeing it operate there.
While at Henryetta’s 2003 all-year reunion, I drove out to Hoffman, Grayson and Gulftown just to look around country I remembered and thought I was able to dimly pick out the shovel’s old path over a hill just south of the highway. But did I? There had been 56 years for new trees to refill the path.  I think nostalgia just made me think I saw it.