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Covering Green Country: Jenks

Flooding in Jenks 1974
Jenks City Hall 1985
Posted at 12:36 PM, Sep 07, 2023

Jenks is a city of 26,661 residents nestled between the Arkansas River and U.S. Route 75.

The city was originally platted on July 15, 1905.

Early settlers in the area included small entrepreneurs, farmers, and ranchers. The Perryman family, who were Freedmen, received a plot of land from the federal government. With the land, the family established Tulsa County's first homestead, located within Jenks.

The homestead, called the Perryman Ranch, can still be visited today.

There are several different stories behind the name Jenks, but the Oklahoma Historical Society says the most accepted origin comes from a 1957 Tulsa Tribune article in which J.H. Hill, an agent for the townsite company, said, "Jenks, whose name was given to the town, was a director in the Philadelphia corporation that built the Midland Valley Railroad."

Jenks City Hall 1985
The 24,000-square-foot city hall at Jenks was completed in July. Staff Photo by Turk Randell. Original Photo 10/25/1985.

"He asked me to name the town for him, so I did," Hill said.

Jenks Public Schools was first opened in 1908 and has been a core for the community ever since. The student population started at 27. Today, around 13,000 students attend the school.

Jenks' Main Street is a major attraction for the town and has come back after difficulties from floods, expansion, and economic hardships.

Jenks has been called the "Antique Capital of Oklahoma" for all the antique shops on and around Main Street.


There are lots of fun restaurants and activities in Jenks, including the Riverwalk and the Oklahoma Aquarium.

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