This small town in Carter County may have a total area of fewer than six miles, but it once served as the trading center for many smaller communities in the region. Rich in history, the city still stands strong, with the town dedicated to preserving the past and promoting the future.
What to Do
The Wilson Historical Museum opened in November 2001 and featured artifacts and exhibits in a renovated mid-1920s building. Over a thousand photographs, artifacts, and newspapers dating from 1915 to the present day tell the history of Wilson and western Carter County. A weekly column, "Museum Memories," is currently printed in The Wilson Post-Democrat. The museum also offers a shop available in-store and on its website. The Centennial Cookbook, which contains biographies, pictures and recipes from Wilson citizens, is also available at the museum. Hours will quickly pass as you become engrossed in the vast array of historical legends, documents and photographs!
Black Gold Casino is conveniently located on Highway 70. Adjacent to the Wilson Travel Stop, visitors will find snacks and convenience items near the casino. The gaming facility features over 200 electronic games covering 3,744 square feet, and you will find top-notch customer service every time you visit! The casino also offers a variety of entertaining promotional events and features a gaming experience you won't want to miss!
Blondell's Flower's & Gifts is a charming shop that sells floral arrangements for all occasions, unique gifts and home decor. The owner and employees are always welcoming to humans and pets, so bring your furry best friend on a road trip to a business that offers more than a shopping experience but a historical stopover. Another fun shopping boutique is Go Rowdy Girl Boutique. As the name suggests, this store offers women's clothes and accessories for every age! Sunkissed Tanning Gifts & More lets you get tan and style for your next summer outing!
Where to Eat
Khaki's Roadhouse BBQ is open for breakfast, lunch & dinner! Swing by the drive-through, pick up a to-go order, or sit down and enjoy a delicious meal from barbecue to breakfast favorites!
Chuck Norris, born in Ryan, Oklahoma, often visited his grandmother in Wilson. As a child, his family was in and out of Wilson, and when he was a preteen, they moved to California. The internationally known martial artist and movie star's mother still travels back to Wilson to visit once or twice a year.
Wilson is located in Carter County along U.S. Highway 70, 16 miles west of Ardmore and 35 miles east of Waurika. The town was established in the early 1900s by Jake Hamon and John Ringling. Hamon was an attorney, oilman and politician, while Ringling was part owner of the highly successful Ringling Bros., Barnum and Bailey Circus. Wilson was named in honor of Charles C. Wilson, who was Ringling's secretary. Hamon had inspiring dreams of developing a railroad to the west coast, which inevitably led him to the town of Wilson. While traveling in New York City, Hamon unexpectedly met Ringling at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel. They enthusiastically discussed Hamon's desire to construct a railroad and quickly formed a business partnership. On September 22, 1913, a contract was signed for constructing a railroad depot in Wilson. By January 1914, Wilson was considered the 'Wonder City of Carter County' with businesses growing town-wide, including a newspaper, telegraph service, oil supply houses, two hotels and half a dozen restaurants with a population of 1,500. A post office was established in early 1914, and a public library was opened in 1917. By the mid-twenties, Wilson had a flourishing population of 5,000 with several businesses, including banks, refineries, medical offices, over 60 retail stores and various hotels. Wilson was recognized as a first-class municipality and destination. Over time, the economic depression led to the loss of many businesses in Wilson, and the population is currently less than 2,000. The years after WWII and the increased use of automobiles gradually left the town with economic challenges but a rich history.