In the second decade of the twentieth century a dispersed rural community began to emerge in northwestern Grady County in approximately the center of Township 9 North, Range 5 West. By 1934 at least, a school district and local farms were being identified as "Bridge Creek." The present location of Bridge Creek is northwest of the intersection of Interstate 44 (the H. E. Bailey Turnpike) and Sooner Road (also called Bridge Creek Road).
Before its incorporation, Bridge Creek was the center of a rural school district for most of the twentieth century. It began with eight grades and by 1950 had added a high school. In the early 1970s the district's student population grew rapidly due to an influx of Oklahoma City families who moved out of the city in the wake of a 1972 court-mandated public school desegregation program. By turn of the twenty-first century the Bridge Creek rural school district served more than a thousand students.
The rural area of Bridge Creek has had several occasions of damaging tornadoes. In April 1951 a twister destroyed Bridge Creek High School and neighboring residences. On May 3, 1999, a tornado caused widespread destruction in the Bridge Creek area, killing twelve people. According to the National Weather Service, the massive storm had intermittent F5 damage in the Bridge Creek area, south Oklahoma City, and Moore.
In the late twentieth century a large section of northern Grady and McClain counties, including Bridge Creek, Newcastle, Tuttle, and Blanchard, became known as the "Tri City" area. In 2000 the Bridge Creek population decided to seek incorporation to avoid annexation by one of the three others, which were already incorporated. In July of that year the Grady County Commission approved a petition from a seventy-acre housing addition, Prairie Manor, for organization as the town of Bridge Creek, and on November 7, 2000, residents of that addition voted to incorporate. Four discontiguous areas have comprised Bridge Creek's corporate limits from 2000 through 2014. Two of these areas lie along Sara Road around the intersection with Fox Lane; one area encompasses a two-mile-long strip running east and west along long Sooner/Bridge Creek roads; and the fourth area extends west from Cemetery Road, halfway between Fox Lane and Bridge Creek Road. In 2010 the U.S. Census reported a population of 336 within these bounds.
See also: SETTLEMENT PATTERNS
Daily Oklahoman, 24 June 1934, 21 March 1935, 2 October 1942, 6 April 1951, 10 December 1972, 4 September 2000, 20–22 October 2000, and 3–10 November 2000.
"Frequently Asked Questions About the May 3, 1999 Bridge Creek/OKC Area Tornado," National Weather Service, http://www.srh.noaa.gov, accessed 11 March 2014.
Resolution By the Board of County Commissioners, July 3, 2000, Grady County Clerk Office, Chickasha, Oklahoma.
The following (as per The Chicago Manual of Style, 17th edition) is the preferred citation for articles:
Dianna Everett, “Bridge Creek,” The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture, https://www.okhistory.org/publications/enc/entry.php?entry=BR032.
© Oklahoma Historical Society.