why is oklahoma called the sooner state
Thousands of people lined up on the border and, when the signal was given, they raced into the territory to claim their land. Some people went in early to claim their land. They became known as Sooners. Hence, Oklahoma’s nickname today is “The Sooner State”.
Sooners is the name given to settlers who entered the Unassigned Lands in what is now the state of Oklahoma before the official start of the Land Rush of 1889. President Benjamin Harrison officially proclaimed the Unassigned Lands open to settlement on April 22, 1889. As people lined up around the borders of the Oklahoma District, they waited for the official opening. It wasn’t until noon that it officially was opened to settlement. The name derived from the “sooner clause” of the act, which stated that anyone who entered and occupied the land prior to the opening time would be denied the right to claim land.