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Please add profiles for those who were born, lived or died in Kay County, Oklahoma.

Official Website


The remains of two large 18th-century villages, the Deer Creek/Bryson Paddock Sites, of Wichita Native Americans have been found overlooking the Arkansas River in Kay County. The Osage used Kay County for hunting in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. In 1825, the Osage ceded to the U.S. government their rights to a large expanse of land, including Kay County, and the government gave the Cherokee ownership of the land after their migration to Oklahoma in the 1830s.

After the Civil War, the Cherokee Nation was forced to allow the federal government to relocate other Native American tribes to settle in the area known as the Cherokee Outlet. The Kansa (Kaw) arrived in June 1873, settling in what became the northeastern part of Kay County. The Ponca followed in 1877. The Nez Perce came from the Pacific Northwest in 1879, but remained only until 1885, when they returned to their earlier homeland. Their assigned land in Oklahoma was then occupied by the Tonkawa and Lipan Apache peoples. Most of Kay County became open to non-Native American settlement in 1893 with the Cherokee Strip Land Run in which thousands of people rushed into Kay County to claim free land.

The Chilocco Indian Agricultural School, north of Newkirk, was a boarding school for Indians that operated from 1884 to 1980. Its enrollment peaked at 1,300 in the 1950s and its graduates include members of 126 Indian tribes. The distinguished old buildings of the school were constructed of local limestone.

In 2010, the Keystone-Cushing Pipeline (Phase II) was constructed north to south through Kay County to Cushing in Payne County.

Adjacent Counties

Cities, Towns & Communities

  • Blackwell
  • Braman
  • Chilocco
  • Kaw City
  • Kildare
  • Nardin
  • Newkirk (County Seat)
  • Ponca City (part)
  • Tonkawa
  • White Eagle



Travel OK

Genealogy Trails

Nat'l Reg. of Hist. Places