Once upon a time this land was nothing but a giant forest. In 1802 Osage Indians settled here and began doing business with French traders. The Osage chief Glahmo’s name was mispronounced by the French as ‘Clairmont’. Afterwards the chief became known by this name, and eventually, when the town settlement was officially put on the books, a clerical error that entered the name as ‘Claremore’ was never corrected.
The area was declared part of the Cherokee Nation after the Louisiana Purchase, and development of the area came in the form of the railways that intersected in town. The town came to further prominence when it was used as the setting for the classic Rodgers and Hammerstein musical, Oklahoma! Many historical buildings from the early days of the city are still standing and a rebuilding and renovation program was carried out and completed early in 2007.
The town is home to celebrity Will Rogers, whose family was one of the first to settle and build a ranch in Indian Territory. The entire Rogers family is buried at the Will Rogers Memorial and their house is now a historical monument. Another fixture named after the family is the Will Rogers Downs, a racetrack and gambling den.
The Belvidere: a 1907 Victorian mansion formerly owned by local banker John M Bayless is a good example of the town’s architectural past.
Will Rogers Downs: Place your bets at the racetrack named after one of Claremont’s most famous sons.
J.M. Davis Arms and Historical Museum: Stop by and see Mr Davis’ self-proclaimed ‘World’s Largest Private Gun Collection.’