History of Major County

The region known, as the Cherokee outlet, or often called the Cherokee strip, was sixty miles wide and two hundred and twenty miles long, with 9,409 square miles, 6,000,000 fertile acres, was opened to settlers at noon, September 16, 1893. The run, in the northwest section of the state, attacted nearly 100,000 new settlers to the area.

It contained seven counties, Pawnee, Noble, Kay, Grant, Garfield, Woods and Woodward. The population was largely American, and Kansas was possibly more numerously represented than any other state among the original claimants, although Texans, Missourians, Buckeyes, Hawkeyes, Suckers and Corncrackers were also to be found in abundance. In the strip was grown as fine cotton as any region produces; barley, which was a sure crop and yielded heavily; Kaffir corn, which furnished as much grain per acre as Indian corn, and was especially valued for its fodder; castor beans, sorghum, alfalfa, etc. Peach trees are very productive, and the fruit is not only fine in flavor, but large in size. Other varieties of fruits also flourish. When the comparatively recent settlement of this portion of Oklahoma is considered, its present state of development is remarkable, and presents an object lesson of what can be accomplished by men of energy amid favorable surroundings.

The land rush transformed empty prairies into future farms, communities and towns almost overnight. Transportation was by wagon, buggy, horseback or on foot, taking several days to travel a very short distance by today's standards. The best means of communication to everyone was the mail service. Thus post offices sprang up everywhere, providing an important service to the newly arrived settlers. The western prairie had a post office about every six or eight miles. As modes of transportaion improved, many of these post offices were discontinued, or absorbed into larger cities over the years. Some became larger settlements which are now the towns and cities of today.

When Oklahoma became a state in 1907, other counties were formed. The southern portion of Woods county became Major County. The new county was named for John C. Major, a member of the Oklahoma Constitutional Convention. Located in Northwest Oklahoma, Major county is surrounded to the west by Woodward County, Woods and Alfalfa counties to the north, Garfield county on the east, with Kingfisher, Blaine, and Dewey counties to the south.

Fairview, which took its name from its scenic location in a wooded valley east of the uplands forming the Glass Mountains, became the county seat. The post office at Fairview had been previously established on 18 Apr 1894. Of the many post offices established in Major County, few are in existance today. Some of the small communities of earlier days remain as populated places throughout the county, but many are gone. Some have dissappeared without leaving any signs that they ever existed. A few places are still considered populated, although nothing or very little of the town remains. Some of the names of towns or post offices were changed.

Major County Place Names

Major County Townships