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Introduction

Flag of Oklahoma.svg

Oklahoma ( /ˌkləˈhmə/ ( About this sound listen)) is a state in the South Central region of the United States, bordered by Kansas on the north, Missouri on the northeast, Arkansas on the east, Texas on the south, New Mexico on the west, and Colorado on the northwest. It is the 20th-most extensive and the 28th-most populous of the fifty United States. The state's name is derived from the Choctaw words okla and humma, meaning "red people". It is also known informally by its nickname, " The Sooner State", in reference to the non-Native settlers who staked their claims on land before the official opening date of lands in the western Oklahoma Territory or before the Indian Appropriations Act of 1889, which dramatically increased European-American settlement in the eastern Indian Territory. Oklahoma Territory and Indian Territory were merged into the State of Oklahoma when it became the 46th state to enter the union on November 16, 1907. Its residents are known as Oklahomans (or colloquially, "Okies"), and its capital and largest city is Oklahoma City.

A major producer of natural gas, oil, and agricultural products, Oklahoma relies on an economic base of aviation, energy, telecommunications, and biotechnology. Both Oklahoma City and Tulsa serve as Oklahoma's primary economic anchors, with nearly two thirds of Oklahomans living within their metropolitan statistical areas.

Selected article

Totem Pole Park.jpg

Ed Galloway's Totem Pole Park consists of eleven objects and one building on 14 acres (57,000 m²) in Rogers County, Oklahoma. The park is ten miles (16 km) north-east of Claremore and is located 3.5 miles (6 km) east of historic U.S. Route 66 and Foyil. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places on 30 March 1999 and is currently owned and operated by the Rogers County Historical Society and the Foyil Heritage Association. The park's main totem pole is claimed to be the "World’s Largest Concrete Totem Pole."

After more than 20 years as a manual arts teacher at the Children’s Home orphanage in Sand Springs, OK, in 1937 Ed Galloway retired and moved his family to a small farm near Foyil. Shortly afterwards he embarked on an ambitious folk art project to create a three-dimensional totem pole using modern building materials. After eleven years of work, Galloway’s totem pole was completed in 1948 and topped out at approximately 90 ft (27 m) in height. The totem pole’s construction took six tons of steel, 28 tons of cement, and 100 tons of sand and rock. The base is 30 ft (9 m) wide and rests on the back of a colourfully painted turtle. It is decorated with approximately 200 bas relief images of brightly colored Native American portraits, symbols, and animal figures that cover the entire totem pole from the base to its pinnacle. (Read more...)

Spotlight city

Downtown McAlester.jpg

McAlester located in Pittsburg County, Oklahoma, United States. The population was 17,783 at the 2000 census. It is the county seat of Pittsburg County.

The crossing of the east-west California Road with the north-south Texas Road formed a natural point of settlement in Tobucksy County of the Choctaw Nation, a site originally called Bucklucksy. James Jackson McAlester, an employee of licensed traders Reynolds and Hannaford convinced the firm to locate a general store at that location in late 1869. The general store was an immediate success, but J.J. McAlester recognized an even greater opportunity in the abundance of readily available coal deposits in the area, and the impending construction of a rail line through Indian Territory. In 1871, J.J. McAlester journeyed with a sample of coal to the railroad town in hopes of persuading officials to locate the line near his store at Bucklucksy. The location of the trading post on the Texas Road weighed in its favor, given that the Katy Railroad line construction roughly followed the Shawnee Trail – Texas Road route southward to the Red River. The line reached Bucklucksy in 1872 and Katy Railroad officials named the railway stop McAlester. (Read more...)

Selected image

People of Oklahoma.jpg
Credit: User:CPacker
The People of Oklahoma exhibit in the Sam Noble Museum of Natural History.

Did you know...

Oklahoma State Highway 66.svg
  • ...that Tulsa is often considered the birthplace of U.S. Route 66?
  • ...that Oklahoma has the longest drivable stretch of Route 66 in the nation?
  • ...that in 1927, Oklahoma businessman Cyrus Avery, known the "Father of Route 66," proposed using an existing stretch of highway from Amarillo, Texas to Tulsa for the original portion of Highway 66?
  • ...that Oklahoman Cyrus Avery spearheaded the creation of the U.S. Highway 66 Association, the organization that oversaw the planning and creation of Route 66, and he placed the organization's headquarters in Tulsa?

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State facts

State symbols

The Scissortail Flycatcher, Oklahoma's state bird

Selected biography

Blake Edwards 1966.jpg

Blake Edwards (July 26, 1922 – December 15, 2010) was an American film director, screenwriter and producer. In 2004, he received an Honorary Academy Award in recognition of his writing, directing and producing an extraordinary body of work for the screen.

Edwards's distinguished career began in the 1940s as an actor but he soon turned to writing radio scripts at Columbia Pictures. He used his writing skills to begin producing and directing, with some of his best films including: Experiment in Terror, The Great Race, and the hugely successful Pink Panther film series with the British comedian Peter Sellers. Often thought of as primarily a director of comedies, he was also renowned for his dramatic work, Breakfast at Tiffany's and Days of Wine and Roses. ( Read more...)

Oklahoma news

2016
  • May
    • Lawmakers approve a bill that would make performing abortions a felony, and revoke the medical license of most assisting physicians, the first such proposed law in the US [1]

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