The state capital of Oklahoma, Oklahoma City, was not the original capital. Guthrie served as the territorial capital from 1890 until statehood in 1907, when the capital was moved to Oklahoma City.
Carter County, Oklahoma, has a rich history dating back thousands of years. The area was initially inhabited by various Native American tribes, including the Chickasaw and Choctaw nations, who relied on the fertile land for farming and hunting. European explorers, such as Hernando de Soto in the 16th century, also passed through the region.

In the early 1800s, the United States government began negotiating treaties with the Native American tribes in the area, leading to their forced removal to Indian Territory. During the 1837 Chickasaw Removal, the Chickasaw Nation established its capital in present-day Tishomingo, which became a prominent town in the county.

After the founding of Oklahoma Territory in 1889, Carter County was officially established in 1907. Its name honors Captain Ben W. Carter, a well-known Cherokee Indian scout and leader in the region. The county's main industries at that time were agriculture and ranching, with cotton and cattle being the primary commodities.

Oil was discovered in the Healdton Field in the early 1900s, sparking an oil boom that significantly impacted the county's economy. The population increased rapidly, and towns such as Ardmore and Healdton saw tremendous growth. The oil industry continues to play a significant role in the county's economy.

Today, Carter County is home to numerous historical sites, including the Chickasaw National Recreation Area, which was established in 1902 as the first national park in Oklahoma. The county also boasts a diverse economy, with sectors such as healthcare, manufacturing, and tourism contributing to its growth and development.

This timeline provides a condensed summary of the historical journey of Carter County, Oklahoma.

  • 1837 - The land that is now Carter County is part of the Chickasaw Nation's territory.
  • 1856 - The Chickasaw Nation enters into a treaty with the United States, establishing a reservation in present-day Carter County.
  • 1872 - The Missouri, Kansas and Texas Railroad begins construction through the area, leading to increased settlement.
  • 1901 - Carter County is established as part of the Oklahoma Territory.
  • 1907 - Oklahoma becomes a state, including Carter County.
  • 1910 - The city of Ardmore becomes the county seat of Carter County.
  • 1933 - The construction of Lake Murray State Park begins, providing a recreational area for residents and visitors.
  • 1964 - The Turner Falls Park is established in the Arbuckle Mountains, becoming a popular tourist attraction.
  • 1995 - The Murray State College Arbuckle Center opens in Ardmore, providing educational opportunities to the community.