Bristow, located in eastern Oklahoma, began as a trading post in Indian Territory in 1897. Bristow was named for Senator Joseph L. Bristow of Kansas. At the time the post office was established on April 25, 1898, he was the fourth Assistant Postmaster General. Before the post office was opened, it was a trading post in the Indian Territory. Bristow was part of the former Creek Nation Indian Territory and was known as the Woodland Queen.
The town began to thrive when the St. Louis-San Francisco Railroad came through in July 1898. Two of the first things the settlers did in 1898 was to organize and erect a small frame school house on East Sixth Street. In 1899, A.H. Purdy opened Bristow's first bank, The Territorial Bank. The Bristow area was agricultural and suited for cotton growing, with several cotton gins.
In the 1920's. Bristow became an oil boom town. Oil production became the most important source of new wealth in Oklahoma, and still holds a top spot in Oklahoma resources.
Bristow is located 30 miles Southwest of Tulsa and 70 miles from Oklahoma City. Bristow is served by Interstate 44 (Turner Turnpike), U.S. Highway 66 (old Route 66), and State Highways 16 and 48.