Oklahoma was the birthplace of many famous people, including Will Rogers, a humorist and actor; Brad Pitt, a famous Hollywood actor; and Reba McEntire, a country music singer and actress.

Cherokee County, located in northeastern Oklahoma, has a rich and complex history that dates back thousands of years. The region was traditionally inhabited by various Native American tribes, including the Cherokee, Creek, and Osage peoples. The arrival of European settlers in the early 19th century brought significant changes to the area.

In 1828, the United States government signed the Treaty of New Echota, which resulted in the forced removal of thousands of Cherokee people from their ancestral lands in the southeastern United States to present-day Oklahoma. This event, known as the Trail of Tears, had a profound impact on the Cherokee people and the region's history.

After reaching present-day Oklahoma, the Cherokee people established their own government and rebuilt their lives. In 1839, the Cherokee Nation was formally established, with Tahlequah as its capital. Over the years, the Cherokee Nation worked towards economic development and political autonomy. Today, it remains a significant cultural and political presence in Cherokee County and the surrounding areas.

In the late 19th century, Cherokee County experienced growth and development with the discovery of coal and zinc deposits. As mining operations expanded, towns were established, and the economy thrived. However, the decline of the mining industry in the 20th century led to economic challenges in the region.

Cherokee County continues to honor its rich history and cultural heritage. Numerous historic sites, museums, and festivals celebrate the Cherokee people and their contributions to the area. Today, the county remains a blend of Native American, historical, and modern influences, providing a diverse and vibrant community for its residents.

  • 1828: The Cherokee Nation is established in the area that will become Cherokee County.
  • 1838-1839: The forced removal of Cherokee people from their ancestral lands, known as the Trail of Tears, takes place.
  • 1842: The Cherokee Nation establishes a government and adopts a constitution.
  • 1907: Oklahoma becomes a state, including Cherokee County.
  • 1914: The Cherokee National Female Seminary, now known as Northeastern State University, opens in Tahlequah.
  • 1950s-1960s: The construction of Lake Tenkiller brings tourism and recreational opportunities to the county.
  • 1971: The Cherokee Nation Supreme Court is established.
  • 1999: The Cherokee Nation becomes the largest Native American tribe in the United States based on population.
  • 2011: The Cherokee Nation opens the Cherokee Nation Veterans Center in Tahlequah.