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Oklahoma History Timeline

  • (1682) French explorer Robert Cavelier, Sieur de la Salle claimed Oklahoma for France
  • (1803) U.S. acquired most of Oklahoma from France in the Louisiana Purchase
  • (1830s - 1840s) The Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek and Seminole (called the Five Civilized Tribes) were forced to relocate from their native lands (by the U.S. government) into Oklahoma, known then as the Indian Territory. Thousands of native Americans lost their lives on the bloody marches to Oklahoma.
  • (1842) Remaining Seminole Indians (from Florida) moved to Oklahoma
  • (1860s) After the Civil War, because the Indians had sided with the Confederacy, they faced ruin and forfeiture of their lands
  • (1870s) An additional 25 tribes were moved to Oklahoma to reside on federal lands
  • (1872) The railroad crossed Oklahoma, and routes of commerce began to open
  • (1875) At the Battle of Washita, George Custer defeated remaining Indian forces, and in general terms the Indian wars ended
  • (1889) U.S. government opened all unassigned Oklahoma lands for settlement, and thousands of settlers crossed the border to stake their claims
  • (1890) Oklahoma Territory created, coexisted with the Indian Territory
  • (1907) Oklahoma became a state
  • (1930s) Severe drought and the national economic depression ruined most of Oklahoma's farmers
  • (1959) Alcohol prohibition was repealed in the state
  • (1971) The McClellen-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System opened, connecting Tulsa (and Oklahoma) to the Mississippi River
  • (1990) Oklahoma became the first state to limit the terms of legislators
  • (1995) Terrorist bomb blew up the Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City, killing 168 people, and injuring hundreds more
  • (2001) Two Oklahoma State basketball players, six staffers, broadcasters associated with team killed in plane crash during snowstorm in Colorado; Oklahoma City bomber, Timothy McVeigh, executed
  • (2002) Two Oklahoma State basketball players, six staffers, broadcasters associated with team killed in plane crash during snowstorm in Colorado; Oklahoma City bomber, Timothy McVeigh, executed; 12 people killed when barge struck bridge, caused collapse into Arkansas River on Interstate 40
  • (2004) Oklahoma City bomber co-conspirator, Terry Nichols, found guilty on all counts
  • (2008) Tornado struck Picher, killed six, destroyed 20-block area (clean-up efforts complicated by town's status as one of most polluted sites in nation)
  • (2010) Tornadoes, rainstorms killed two, injured hundreds, damaged more than 1,485 homes and businesses
  • (2011) Tornadoes struck in several areas of the state, killing five

Oklahoma Photographs

Robert de la salleLouisianna purchaseAndarko IndiansTrail of tearsFort WashitaOklahoma CityPitcher tornado

Oklahoma Cities, Counties & Area Codes

City County Area Code
Stilwell Adair 918
Cherokee Alfalfa 580
Atoka Atoka 580
Beaver Beaver 580
Elk City Beckham 580
Watonga Blaine 580
Durant Bryan 580
Anadarko Caddo 405
Yukon Canadian 405
Ardmore Carter 580
Tahlequah Cherokee 918
Hugo Choctaw 580
Boise City Cimarron 580
Norman Cleveland 405
Coalgate Coal 580
Lawton Comanche 580
Walters Cotton 580
Vinita Craig 918
Sapulpa Creek 918
Weatherford Custer 580
Grove Delaware 918
Vici Dewey 580
Shattuck Ellis 580
Enid Garfield 580
Pauls Valley Garvin 405
Chickasha Grady 405
Medford Grant 580
Mangum Greer 580
Hollis Harmon 580
Laverne Harper 580
Stigler Haskell 918
Holdenville Hughes 405
Altus Jackson 580
Waurika Jefferson 580
Tishomingo Johnston 580
Ponca City Kay 580
Kingfisher Kingfisher 405
Hobart Kiowa 580
Wilburton Latimer 918
Poteau Leflore 918
Chandler Lincoln 405
Guthrie Logan 405
Marietta Love 580
Fairview Major 580
Madill Marshall 580
Pryor Mayes 918
Blanchard McClain 405
Broken Bow McCurtain 580
Checotah McIntosh 918
Sulphur Murray 580
Muskogee Muskogee 918
Perry Noble 580
Nowata Nowata 918
Okemah Okfuskee 918
Oklahoma City Oklahoma 405
Edmond Oklahoma 405
Okmulgee Okmulgee 918
Skiatook Osage 918
Miami Ottawa 918
Cleveland Pawnee 918
Stillwater Payne 405
McAlester Pittsburg 918
Ada Pontotoc 580
Shawnee Pottawatomie 405
Antlers Pushmataha 580
Cheyenne Roger Mills 580
Claremore Rogers 918
Seminole Seminole 405
Sallisaw Sequoyah 918
Duncan Stephens 580
Guymon Texas 580
Frederick Tillman 580
Tulsa Tulsa 918
Broken Arrow Wagoner 918
Bartlesville Washington 918
Cordell Washita 580
Alva Woods 580
Woodward Woodward 580

About the Author

John Moen is a cartographer who along with his wife are the orignal founders of worldatlas.com. He and his wife, Chris Woolwine-Moen, produced thousands of award-winning maps that are used all over the world and content that aids students, teachers, travelers and parents with their geography and map questions. Today, it's one of the most popular educational sites on the web.

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This page was last updated on July 10, 2020.