Lake Texoma History

Local History

On the north shore of the Washita arm of Lake Texoma in northwestern Bryan County lies the partially restored ruins of old Fort Washita. The frontier military post was built on a site selected and named by Gen. Zachary Taylor, who became the first post commander in 1843, and later president of the United States. The fort was garrisoned by United States troops until May 1, 1861, when it was abandoned to Confederate forces. Although Fort Washita was not used as a military establishment after the Civil War, the post office continued in operation until 1880. The site is kept open to the public by the Oklahoma Historical Society.

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Dam History and Development

Denison Dam and Lake Texoma were authorized for construction by the Flood Control Act approved June 28, 1938, (Public Law No. 761, 75th Congress, 3rd Session) for flood control and generation of hydroelectric power. The dam, spillway and outlet works were started in August 1939, and completed in February 1944 at a cost of $78,307,000. When completed in 1944, Denison Dam was America's largest rolled, earth-filled dam. The dam is now the 12th largest in volume in the United States.

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Lake Texoma Summary and Description

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Reservoir: The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers invites you to visit Lake Texoma, the largest lake in capacity in the Tulsa District and the twelfth largest in the United States. It is also one of the most popular Federal recreation facilities in the country, with more than 6 million visitors annually. In 1999 Texoma ranked first among Corps of Engineers lake projects nationwide, with visitors spending over 90 million hours at the lake.

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