|COLLINSVILLE, OKLAHOMA (About Us)
|More About Collinsville
the midst of the Cherokee portion of Indian Territory (about ten years before
Oklahoma statehood) a small community formed. The site was about a mile east of
present day Collinsville. That community was named after Dr. A.H. Collins who
was persuaded to move his post office there in 1898. In 1899 the town was incorporated
(meaning they had a population of at least 200). The railroad was completed that
same year and followed the present day route rather than building extra bridges
to cross creeks to the original town site. The early Collinsville settlers then
moved their town (including the wooden buildings and houses) to be adjacent to
the new tracks.
Collinsville has seen several cycles of prosperity and lean times since that move. With cattle, coal and farming being dominant in the beginning, the community exploded after 1911 when two huge zinc smelters arrived. Those smelters brought thousands of workers and associated business to town. The population reached a peak of at least 8,000 at one point before the smelter business wained in the early 1920s. During those busy times, many of the brick buildings were built that still give Collinsville its unique downtown character today. Collinsville's own brick plant provided the bricks for those buildings as well as paving of many of the town's streets.
Without the large smelter business, the city relied on oil, gas, farming, and local merchants to carry it forward to today. Five years of volunteer labor built Collinsville's public swimminmg pool in the 1950s. Donations from Collinsville residents and surrounding communities brought a regional hospital to Collinsville in the 1960s. That hospital was built before the modern Highways (169 & 75) made travel to Tulsa Hospitals a convenient trip. Collinsville lost that hospital in 1986 as health care economics changed.
Today Collinsville has one of Oklahoma's fastest growing school districts with new residents expanding the population beyond the 4000 mark daily. The downtown district is being restored and revitilaized and the future looks bright for present Collinsville residents and new comers looking for a friendly place to live.
by Ted W. Wright -- July 2004
(Newspaper Museum In Collinsville and www.cvilleok.com)
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