Tahlequah has a long and interesting history and members of the Cherokee Nation played leading roles in its development. In 1899, an area newspaper reported that Tahlequah was a “town where fine homes could be found on streets shaded by immense trees.” One of those homes belonged to Joseph M. Thompson, a prominent Cherokee physician.
The house was built in 1882 and the Thompson family lived in it until the 1930’s. The two-story house’s architectural style is Queen Anne Carpenter Gothic with Eastlake style interior. woodwork.
Dr. Thompson was very influential in Tahlequah’s early days and held several important positions with the Cherokee Nation.
Mrs. Thompson was a skilled weaver and today her loom room has been restored to look similar to when she used it.
The ancestors of the family date to the American Colonial period.
The exterior and interior of the Thompson House have been completely restored. All of the rooms are beautifully decorated and furnished with period furniture.
The house is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
1839—Tahlequah is established.
1839—1stSuperintendent of Education west of the Mississippi
1843—Main Street is platted and surveyed.
1851—Cherokee Seminaries opened.
1867--69—Cherokee brick capitol built.
1880—1stflour mill opens in what is now Oklahoma.
1886—1sttelephone in the Mississippi Valley
west of the Mississippi River is operational.
1887-89—2ndCherokee Female Seminary is built.
(First building at Park Hill burned.)
1891—1stbank is opened.
1907—Oklahoma becomes a state.
1909—Northeastern State Normal School opens.
(Formerly Cherokee Female Seminary)
The Thompson House was built in the 1880's by a prominent Tahlequah businessman, Johnson Thompson. When he was a teenager Mr. Thompson traveled the Trail of Tears with his Cherokee family as they journeyed from the east to their new home in Indian Territory. As he grew to manhood Mr. Thompson engaged in the mercantile business and became an affluent and prominent merchant in the growing town of Tahlequah. He built beautiful homes for himself and his children and sent his children to school in the Cherokee Seminaries located in Tahlequah. He sent son Joseph to medical college in Missouri. This house is one of three built by Mr. Thompson.
Tahlequah is a very old city, having been established as the capital of the Cherokee Nation in 1839. The Thompson House represents the type of dwelling enjoyed by many of the early families as they accrued the necessary financial resources to build homes of this size. The house is of Queen Anne and Carpenter Gothic styles with Eastlake features. The furniture is of the time when Dr. Thompson’s family occupied the home—1889 until 1935.
Today the home is on the National Register of Historic Places and is governed by a board elected from the membership of this non-profit entity. No salaries are paid to the board and membership is open to citizens wishing to pay the $15.00 membership fee. It is truly a treasure of the community and a joy to all who visit. The good doctor and his family were also treasured citizens of Tahlequah in the early days of the city.
The Thompson House is the perfect place to host a gathering in town. The ladies who run it are great to work with and are so helpful. No need to decorate since the historical background of the house is above and beyond what your normal decor consists of. We will be having future gatherings here for sure! Thank you to everyone who has helped restore this property that is so rich with our town's history.
*fun for all ages*
The Thompson House is a rare glimpse into the past with the strict adherence to furnishings only of a certain time frame. It’s one of a few that have been maintained in the area and open to tour and use by the public
We love the Thompson House! It is a perfect venue for showers, receptions ...any event...we highly recommend in every way! Thanks for Beth helping and all the other staff that were on hand to lend a helping hand !
My wife and I had our wedding here a little over 10 years ago. Was perfect!
I had my bridal shower here. It was perfect! It felt like home!
I was married there! The volunteers were very kind and helpful!