|City/Town: • Meridian|
|Location Class: • Ghost Town|
|Photojournalist: • Cody Cooper • Justin Tyler Moore|
Meridian received its name from the Indian Meridian on which it is located. This line is used as the main street and also separates the town into two townships. The west half being in Bear Creek Township, and the east half in South Cimmarron Township.
In 1902 the townsite was laid out by the Meridian Right-of-Way and Townsite company, and very soon many homes were built and the town began to be populated.
In late 1902, the Missouri, Kansas and Texas Railroad was built through the town and soon after the Fort Smith and Western established a branch line through Meridian and on to Guthrie.
During a fire in 1908, much of the downtown was destroyed, and was later rebuilt in 1920 when a small boom hit the town and grocery stores, cafe’s, music parlors, Meridian Mills, garages, blacksmith shops, and department stores were built. Several doctors also opened up a few drugstores and the post office was rebuilt as well.
Meridian’s first school was located in an upper story of the drugstore, but was destroyed in the fire and in 1936, a large sandstone school was built by the Works Progress Administration for the white children, and later the L’Overture school was built for the black children. In 1970, both schools were closed and the school district annexed to Coyle.
Thanks to our new best friend at the Oklahoma City Library, Larry Johnson who helped us find some very hard to find history on Meridian.