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Canadian County Oklahoma

Canadian County administrative offices are located at 201 North Choctaw Avenue, El Reno, OK 73036; phone: 405-262-1070.

Beginnings [1]

Oklahoma's first land run on April 22, 1889 opened roughly the eastern half of Canadian County to non-Native American settlement. The majority of the remaining land opened to Euro-American settlement three years following in the April 19, 1892 land run. Additional land was added to the southwest corner of the county as a result of the 1901 land lottery. El Reno, established in June 1889, was quickly a thriving town with railroad connections provided by the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railway. Within a year, the town had been designated as the county seat of Canadian County.

Population flourished during Canadian County's first fifty years. Within a year of the opening, Canadian County boasted a population of 7,158. At the turn-of-the-century, the population more than doubled to reach 15,981. By the time of Oklahoma statehood in 1907, the county population stood at just over 20,000. The county continued to grow over the next three years, gaining over 3,000 new residents to bring the total population to 23,501. By 1920, Canadian County population experienced a minor decline, falling to 22,288 citizens. The roaring Twenties, however, proved beneficial to the county, bringing the population to 28,115 by 1930. The depression years brought only a slight decrease in county population, dropping to 27,329 in 1940.

  1. Cynthia Smelker, research assistant, Oklahoma State Historic Preservation Office, Canadian County Jail and Stable, Canadian County, Oklahoma, nomination document, 1995, National Park Service, National Register of Historic Places, Washington, D.C.
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