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El Reno - Home of the Land Rush


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El Reno Oklahoma

El Reno, Oklahoma Vintage Postcard


Just west of Yukon, Oklahoma lies the old Route 66 town of El Reno, Oklahoma. Built at the intersection of two historic highways – the Old Chisholm Trail and Route 66, the town’s less than 20,000 residents are enthusiastic Mother Road boosters.


Before the town of El Reno was born, a man by the name of Jesse Chisholm established the Chisholm Trail in 1866, where hundreds of herds of cattle would be driven north from Texas to Kansas where they would be loaded on trains headed east. On top of Concho Hill north of present day El Reno, the Caddo Springs Stage Station was established and soon became a major stopping point between Wichita, Kansas and Fort Sill, Oklahoma.

Chief Black KettleIn the same year the Cheyenne-Arapaho Reservation was established by a treaty negotiated, in part by Black Kettle, considered the greatest chief of the Southern CheyenneBlack Kettle was later killed by General George Custer at the Battle of the Washita on November, 1868 near the present town of Cheyenne, Oklahoma. The Cheyenne and Arapaho tribes were moved from eastern Colorado to land south of the Arkansas River. The Darlington Indian Agency was established in August, 1869 three miles north and two miles west of present day El Reno. The settlement and the agency took its name from Brinton Darlington, the agency’s first superintendent. Soon, the Cheyenne Indian School was established two miles north of Darlington in 1871.

In 1874, Fort Reno was established to quell the unrest among the Indians in the region. First known as the "Camp Near Cheyenne Agency," the location was later named Fort Reno in 1876 in honor of Major General Jesse L. Reno, who had been killed in the Civil War. The soldiers soon built a stockade where Lieutenant General Philip Sheridan conducted his Indian campaigns from headquarters established at the fort.




Soon the United States Cavalry units calmed down the uprisings in the area, but, stayed on to maintain the peace.


On April 22, 1889, the unassigned lands of the area were opened up for settlement, which quickly became known as the great Oklahoma land run. When the signal was given along the outer boundaries, the Fort Reno soldiers were assigned to keep order among the many rushing pioneers flooding the area.


No sooner was the land opened for settlement when the Rock Island Railroad began to build a line from Caldwell, Kansas to the south bank of the Canadian River. Near Fort Reno, a settlement had sprung up called Reno City, which quickly decided to relocate nearer the railroad.



Continued Next Page


Oklahoma Land Run

Oklahoma Land Run

This image available for photographic prints and  downloads HERE!


ort El Reno Cavalry Barracks today,

Fort El Reno Cavalry Barracks today, November, 2005,

Kathy Weiser.

This image available for photo prints & editorial downloads HERE!


Fort El Reno Chapel today

Fort El Reno Chapel today, November, 2005, Kathy Weiser.

This image available for photo prints & editorial downloads HERE!


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EZ66 Guide for Travelers by Jerry McClanahanRoute 66 Dining and Lodging Guide66 Basics - You can travel Route 66 with just these basics, you will know where to go, where to grab a bite to eat, and where to sleep as you travel the historic Mother Road. The EZ66 Guide For Travelers provides maps in addition to tons of information on Route 66 icons and "must sees." The Route 66 Dining & Lodging Guide will give you those places that you "need" to stop to fortify yourself for the journey. You save on not only retail costs but also on shipping. Ships Priority mail.



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