History

In the spring of 1889, the South Canadian River, bordering Noble on the west, was not bridged and treacherous. Quicksand could cause instant disappearance of both man and beast. Flash floods and raging walls of water swept away everything in their path. Crossing this river was very dangerous, and more than one life was lost in the attempt.

However, danger was no deterrent to JW Klinglesmith, Albert Rennie and several other businessmen, who believed the location was the ideal spot for spanning the river and creating a thriving market center. In fact, Rennie, an attorney from White Bead Hill was so sure about his location for Noble that he had a town site plat drawn up, and convinced railroad authorities to choose his location for a town instead of theirs.

Consequently, on April 22, 1889, the day the land run opened the Indian Territory to settlers, Rennie, Klinglesmith and their group of followers forded the river and laid claim to the 160-acre town site that was to become Noble, Oklahoma. The town was named in honor of Secretary of the Interior John Noble, who was instrumental in opening the land for settlement. The group had great plans for Noble, hoping it would become the future county seat. The town quickly became a thriving business center with two cotton gins, a grain elevator and a general store.


The Santa Fe Railroad completed a railroad depot in Noble in August of 1889. For several years, Noble was a major shipping point for cattle and other goods from both sides of the Canadian River. Business prospered even more when Charles Edwin Garee built a new suspension toll bridge across the Canadian River in 1898. The day the bridge was opened, several hundred people gathered on the Chickasaw side of the bridge to celebrate. That day, everyone crossed the bridge free of charge.

In 1899, Francis Albert Garee began developing and shipping varieties of seedlings, trees and shrubs throughout Oklahoma. The Noble Nursery was one of Noble’s earliest businesses and existed until 1970. Other businesses included Bob Stogner’s barbershop, the Smith Hardware Store, and the W.J Scott’s brickyard.

The suspension bridge washed out in 1904 and other communities began developing nearby. The last passenger train stopped in Noble in 1944 and the depot was moved. Today, Noble remains an active family community with a population of 6481 people.