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Old Cherokee Capitol Building


category : Ethnic Heritage
Old Cherokee Capitol Building The Cherokee Council first met in 1839 under a large open shed in this area, then later in log buildings. During the Civil War, these were burned down by Cherokee General Stand Watie and his Confederate troops. After the war, the Council made provisions for a new building, and it was finished and occupied by 1870. The building was damaged by fire in 1928, and the interior was completely remodeled. Except for a few features, such as a cupola on the roof, and a vestibule at the front entrance, the exterior remains the same. The structure is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. After statehood in 1907, the building served as Cherokee County Courthouse until 1979, when it was returned to the Cherokee Nation where is houses the court system and election board. A tour of the new capital complex, located south of town (built in May, 1978) will give insight into what the tribe is doing today.


Hours: Tours may be requested at the receptionist's desk, Monday through Friday, 8 am - 5 pm.
Address: 101 South Muskogee Avenue, Downtown
Across the street from the Square stands the Cherokee Supreme Court Building built in 1845. It is the oldest government building in the state of Oklahoma and is in the process of restoration.

Come visit us in Tahlequah, Oklahoma

Attractions and Upcoming Events

Cherokee Supreme Court Building

This structure was built in 1845 by James S. Pierce to house the Cherokee National Supreme Court. The supreme and district court both held sessions here for some time. The "Cherokee Advocate" was also printed in this building for several years after the original Advocate building burned. About 1875

Tahlequah, OK Ethnic Heritage

Adams Corner Rural Village

Adams Corner Rural Village is a detailed reconstruction of a small crossroads community of 1875 - 1890, in the final years of the old Cherokee Nation. The Heritage Farm exhibits livestock commonly found on Cherokee farms along with endangered domestic breeds.

Tahlequah, OK Museums

The First Telephone

Here in September, 1885, the first telephone in Oklahoma was connected for service. It was the first telephone in the Mississippi Valley west of St. Louis. The company was organized by a group of Cherokees, namely, D.W. Lipe, L.B. Bell, R.M. Wolfe, J.S. Stapler, J.B. Stapler, and E.D. Hicks.

Tahlequah, OK Markers

Monument to John Ross

John Ross 1790-1866

Principal Chief of the Cherokee, 1828 - 1866

Born October 3, 1790 in Turkeytown, Alabama, the son of a one-quarter Cherokee maiden and a Scotsman, John Ross was elected as the first Principal Chief of the Cherokee Indians in 1828

Tahlequah, OK Monuments

Murrell Home

The Murrell Home was built in the new Cherokee Nation about 1845 by George M. Murrell. Murrell was a native Virginain who married Minerva Ross in 1834. Minerva was a member of a wealthy mixed-blood Cherokee/Scottish family, and the niece of Chief John Ross.

Tahlequah, OK Museums

Things to do Ethnic Heritage near Tahlequah, OK

Saline Courthouse

Only original remaining Cherokee courthouse. ...

Ataloa Lodge

Original Indian arts, crafts and artifacts. ...