In 1803, a college township was set aside in the almost uninhabited woodlands of northwestern Butler County. In 1810, a year after Miami University was chartered, the Village of Oxford was laid out and the first lots were sold. In the following year the first school was built and by 1830, with a population of over 700, the Village of Oxford was incorporated. A charter form of government was adopted in 1960 and a decade later population growth had turned the village into a full-fledged city.
The original boundaries of the City consisted of the Mile Square. A number of annexations during recent decades increased the size, resulting in the City currently consisting of approximately seven square miles.
Miami University was founded in 1809 and has about 14,000 undergraduate students today. Miami University is the second oldest liberal arts educational institution in Ohio. Miami University is well known for development of the McGuffey Readers by W.H. McGuffey, that began publication in 1836. The six readers were based on landmarks of world literature that had good basic values. The readers were used over one hundred years in United States schools. The McGuffey Museum is on the Miami University campus located on the corner of Oak and Springs Streets.