From 1 to 72
Queen Alalah I sees Queen Alalah LXXII Crowned
Dorothy Moore Harbaugh, crowned Queen Alalah I 75 years ago, hadn’t been back to Arkalalah since 1998. She was surprised she could make it for the 2003 festival. It’s a good thing she did too as Harbaugh, 92, was honored on stage during the annual Queen’s Coronation Oct. 24 in the Robert Brown Theatre. “I can’t imagine I’m still here,” said Harbaugh, who lives in Enid, Okla.
Harbaugh received quite an ovation when she took the stage next to Coronation emcee Dr. David Ross. She was presented with a bouquet of flowers.
Prior to the Coronation, Harbaugh reflected on her own crowning in 1928. “I was thrilled to death,” she said. “It was wonderful. Nobody knew what to expect. Those first few years, the queens were all good friends of mine.” Harbaugh said that throughout the years, rarely did she go places where people hadn’t heard of Arkalalah. “Being crowned Queen Alalah was one of the highlights of my life,” she said. Coronation was held Oct. 30, 1928, in the Fifth Avenue Opera House, on the corner of Fifth Avenue and B Street. Harbaugh, a widow since 1979, said she remains in good health and has enjoyed a “good life.”
Harbaugh attended Arkansas City Junior College one year before going on to the University of Kansas. “Pauline Sleeth, the literature teacher, was wonderful,” Harbaugh recalled. “So was Kurt Galle.” Harbaugh said she remembered Sleeth’s attempt to teach her how to correctly pronounce a particular word. “Pauline Sleeth tried to get me to say cow differently,” Harbaugh said. Harbaugh played piano and took up typing. She graduated from KU as a piano major. Harbaugh had two children with her late husband, Russell. Dr. Ann Redding lives in Enid, and a son, R.H. Harbaugh Jr., lives in Tulsa.