In July 1885, General Sheridan crossed the Cimarron River in Indian Territory en-route to the Cheyenne Agency. President Cleveland had ordered reinforcements to Fort Reno along with Generals Sheridan and Miles to meet with Agent Dyer and the Cheyenne leader Stone Calf. General Sheridan concluded that Agent Dyer was not too aggressive in his efforts to disarm, dismount and put Indians onto farms near Darlington.
General Sheridan recommended to President Cleveland that all leases be terminated in Indian Territory and that unauthorized person be removed from Indian land and that the military personnel replace the civilians at the Cheyenne and Arapaho Agency. Sheridan spent time at Fort Reno during the early years and a log cabin structure known as ‘Sheridan’s Headquarters’ is now located on the Canadian County Historical Museum Grounds.
General Sheridan’s Cabin – Canadian County’s oldest standing structure. The cabin, now well over 100 years old, was used as headquarters by General Sheridan, when he was stationed at Fort Reno during the Indian Wars. The simple wood structure was constructed in March of 1876, at old Fort Reno. The cabin was one of the seven buildings scheduled to be demolished over twenty years ago, but the El Reno Chamber of Commerce saved it from destruction. In 1957, the cabin was moved to Adams Park, and then on to the Canadian County Museum.
As of June 2017, the structure is closed to the public and in need of restoration.
Posted December 2019
Sat, 11/30/2019 – 05:10 Posted in: NEWS
By: Shane Smith
Union Pacific grant helps put roof on the Sheridan
Thanks to a grant from Union Pacific, the Canadian County Historical Museum is getting the roof fixed on the oldest building in the county, the Sheridan.
This little log cabin served as a headquarters for Gen. Phillip Sheridan in the late 19th century as he worked to maintain peace between the settlers and the American Indians.
Built in 1876 at Fort Reno, the building was moved to El Reno in 1959. It was in danger of being destroyed to make room for something else, but the Historical Society came along and saved it.
Over the decades, parts of the building have deteriorated, but the $5,000 grant from the UP will give it a new roof and some of the logs will be repaired by Willie Chadwick. The building is different than most other log structures in that the logs run vertical in a picket fashion. The roof repairs are being made by Priority 1.
Vicki Proctor, 25-year president of the Historical Museum, said the preservation of the cabin and other buildings on the museum grounds is important for people beyond El Reno. Proctor said visitors from all over have toured the museum.
“Our biggest draw is we are right off Route 66,” she said. “We’ve had people from Europe, Japan, Singapore and all over the world this year. They travel the route and stop along the way.”
Proctor said there are several things about El Reno that keep people coming back.
“People like to ride the trolley, and you can’t beat the onion-fried burgers. The trains near the museum also add to the ambience.”
Also getting some work is the porch of the El Reno Hotel as well as other buildings such as the one-room Opossum Holler Schoolhouse and a Mennonite Church that was once north of El Reno on U.S. 81.
The museum grounds hold a sign marking the 98th Meridian. According to Proctor, this was where the Land Run of 1889 began.
With the repairs to Sheridan’s Cabin, the El Reno Hotel and other important buildings at the museum, Proctor said the future for history in El Reno is bright and that it’s a piece of the economy.
“All that history is right there at your fingertips,” she said.