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Fort Reno, OK7107 W. Cheyenne St., El Reno, OK
Phone: 405-262-3987 link
Fort Reno is located a few miles west of El Reno on old Route 66. The visitor center (above) is the first building you come to when you enter the fort property. But once you turn into the fort it is about 1.5 miles north to the visitor center.
Fort Reno has been around since 1874 and served as a fort until 1909 when it became a Army Quartermaster Remount Station raising and training horses for the military. During WWII the fort served as a P.O.W Camp housing German and Italian prisoners of war. In 1949 the Fort was converted into Department of Agriculture Experimental Station.
A couple of famous visitors to the Fort were the aviator Amilia Earhat and the humourist Will Rogers. Earhart flew an autogiro, sort of an early helicopter, here somtime in the 1920s and Rogers attended polo matches and horse races here..
The Chapel was built in 1944 by German POW's. It is open to visitors with a pass obtained at the visitor center and can also be rented for weddings. The Chapel was renovated in 1997 and a new roof and front door repairs happened in 2009.
A row of several officer housing buildings are located just north of the visitor center. This was the fort commanders residence.
The large and impressive 1885 Commisary is constructed of red brick. This building is over 200 feet long and covers 16,300 square feet. It was the main storehouse for the old fort and serves as a storage building for the Departmet of Agriculture Grazinglands Research Laboratory at the fort today.
This was at various times a school, a chapel and the home of the Indian Scout Ben Clark. They're not done renovating buildings here and this 1878 building was waiting for its turn when we visited in 2013. The missing brick in this photo shows the urgent need for progress on the project.