Ninnekah is a town located on the Chisholm Trail and is rich in culture. When the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railway reached Chickasha in the Chickasaw Nation, Indian Territory, in 1892 it came south through what would be established as Ninnekah. George R. Beeler, a Chickasaw by marriage, surveyed a townsite on his 2,000 acre ranch. Mr. Beeler said he could have settled in Chickasha but preferred the beautiful hill above a curve in the Little Washita River to raise his family. A post office was established there on July 28, 1892. Mr. Beeler built a store and a trading post which stocked things such as slabs of bacon and barrels of salt and a few canned goods, shoes and buttons. Soon there was a drug store, a hotel and a doctor move to town. In 1911 a passing train started a fire which destroyed many of the building in town.
Between 1909 and 1919 the community population was 400. The first federal census for Ninnekah reported 1,941residents in 1930.
Ninnekah City Hall
301 North Old Hwy 81
PO Box 211
In 1892 George Beeler and his wife Georgia moved with their family to a piece of land just south of Chickasha along the Little Washita River. Beeler chose this spot over Chickasha because he preferred the beautiful hill above a curve in the Little Washita River and thought it would be a nice place to raise his family. When Beeler came he brought Percy Smith to help survey where he wanted his town. The family had a 2,000 acre ranch that was bounded on the south by Agwam, on the west by Norge, on the east by a line about 2 miles east of the town and on the north by the present day Hwy 19. The historic Chisholm Trail ran just east through the Beeler ranch. The Rock Island Railroad also came south through the Beeler ranch in 1892.
Beeler built a merchandise store and stocked it with goods from a bankrupt Ardmore store. There were fine Merino wool blankets and white bedspreads, the store burned down not many months after it opened. Next he built a store which was a trading post type with a warehouse in the back. The items sold included slab bacon, soda crackers, a few canned goods, calico, gingham and other materials used in those days. He also sold shoes, boots, buttons and thread. It served as a reasutraunt and the post office. The post office was established July 28, 1892. The name chosen for the town was Ninnekah, which is a Choctaw word that means "darkness" or "night".
Soon there was a drug store, hotel and a doctor. Business in the downtown area prospered when the railroad crews came in to be fed, they bought a lot of beef and other goods.
In February of 1903 George W. Thomas arrived in Ninnekah. He was a rancher and operated a store which was the first brick building in town. Across the street was Cy Wetherly's Ice Cream Parlor which was a popular gathering spot. They eventually hosted an ice cream supper to raise the money to build the first school. In 1907 the first and only bank in Ninnekah which was the Citizens State Bank was established. In 1908 Thomas built a grain elevator to handle wheat and corn.
In 1911 much of the town burned from sparks caused by the railroad.
Town of Ninnekah