The first capital of both the territory and later the state of Oklahoma, Guthrie still holds on to its roots with its collection of old Victorian era buildings and carriage tours and trolleys lend greatly to the ambiance of what it must have been like to be here in the times of the wild west. Another claim to fame is the Scottish Rite Masonic Temple, and its conservatory - the largest in the world.
The stories about ‘land runs’, taking place when the west was still wide open, are the reason Guthrie became what it is. It was on the 22nd of April 1889 that 10,000 people awaited the cannons to announce free-season on the land that now comprises the city of Guthrie. Once everyone had planted their flags, the city didn’t waste any time in getting itself established and modernized. The gravy days didn’t last however, and when the state capital was moved to Oklahoma, Guthrie lost its steam and began to slow down economically and people began to move away.
Of course, the upside to the years of economic strife is that the city has remained largely as it was in its early days, and in 1999 the whole town was assigned the title of a National Historic Landmark by the National Park Service. It is now the biggest historic district in the USA. Due to all this, the city is receiving many visitors coming under the lure of historical tourism.
Oklahoma Territorial Museum: walk the timeline of Guthrie from its founding, through the hard times to the charming city of today.
Guthrie Scottish Rite Masonic Temple: the ancient secret society is not so secret in Guthrie, with the Masonic Temple being the most prominent structure in town and boasting the world’s largest conservatory.
National Four-string Banjo Hall of Fame Museum: this rather idiosyncratic museum has as its principal display a collection of vintage banjoes.