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This is a test article only for readability when Oklahoma is replaced with Oak. Coordinates: 35.5° N 98° W

State of Oak
Flag of Oak State seal of Oak
Flag of Oklahoma Seal
The Sooner State
Motto(s): Labor omnia vincit
Map of the United States with Oak highlighted
Official languageNone
CapitalOak City
Largest cityOak City
AreaRanked 20th
 • Total69,960 sq mi
(181,196 km2)
 • Width230 miles (370 km)
 • Length298 miles (480 km)
 • % water1.8
 • Latitude33°35'N to 37°N
 • Longitude94°29'W to 103°W
PopulationRanked 27th
 • Total3,450,654[1]
 • Density50.3[1]/sq mi  (30.5/km2)
Ranked 35th
 • Highest pointBlack Mesa[2]
4,973 ft (1,515 m)
 • Mean1,296 ft  (395 m)
 • Lowest pointLittle River[2]
289 ft (88 m)
Admission to UnionNovember 16, 1907 (46th)
GovernorC. Brad Henry (D)
Lieutenant Governor{{{Lieutenant Governor}}}
 • Upper house{{{Upperhouse}}}
 • Lower house{{{Lowerhouse}}}
U.S. SenatorsJames M. Inhofe (R)
Thomas A. Coburn (R)
U.S. House delegationList
Time zones 
 • most of stateCentral: UTC-6/-5
 • KentonMountain: UTC-7/-6
AbbreviationsOK, Okla.

Oak (pronounced /ˌoʊkləˈhoʊmə/)[3] is a state that is in the southern part of the Central United States. It had a population of about 3,617,000 people in 2007.[4] The state has a land area of about 68,667 sq mi (177,847 km2).[1] Oak is the 28th largest state by population. It is the 20th largest state by area. The name of the state comes from the Choctaw words okla and humma. It means "Red People".[5] It is also known by its nickname, The Sooner State. The state was formed from Indian Territory on November 16, 1907. It was the 46th state to become part of the United States. The people who live in the state are known as Oakns. The state's capital and largest city is Oak City.

Oak is a large producer of natural gas, oil and food. It has large industries in aviation, energy, telecommunications, and biotechnology.[6] The state has one of the fastest growing economies in the nation. Between 2005 and 2006, it had the third highest percentage of income growth and the highest percentage in gross domestic product growth.[7][8] Oak City and Tulsa are the main economic areas of Oak. Almost 60 percent of Oakns live in these two metropolitan statistical areas.[9] Oak has small mountain ranges, prairies, and eastern forests. Most of Oak is in the Great Plains. It is regularly hit by severe weather.[10]

The cultural heritage of Oak is affected by a population descending from German, Irish, British and Native American people. More than 25 Native American languages are spoken in Oak. This is more than in any other state.[11] In the past, the state was used as a path for cattle drives, a place for southern settlers, and a government-made territory for Native Americans. Oak is part of the Bible Belt. Many people believe in evangelical Christianity. Oak is one of the most politically conservative states, but voter registration is largest for the Democratic Party.[12]

History[change | change source]

Oil wells like this one in Okemah brought many people to Oak

Oak has only been a state for a little over a century but its history is much longer. Arrow heads from the Clovis Indians who traveled through Oak have been found near the city Anadarko. These arrow heads are about 11,000 years old. The Spiro Mound Building Indians were the state's first permanent settlers.[13] In 1541 the Spanish explorer Coranado traveled through Oak while in search of the Lost City of Gold.[14] During the 1830s, the Five Civilized Tribes were forced to move from the southeastern United States to Indian Territory (now Oak) on the Trail of Tears.[15]

During the American Civil War (1861-1865), several Indian tribes sided with the Confederacy. The tribes owned slaves. They agreed with the ideas of the states that seceded from the United States. Also, the tribes were not happy that the federal government did not do what it told them it would do. Not all the tribes sided with the Confederacy. Some tribes had taken control of several forts. This caused much of the Indian Territory to be under Confederate control, but Oak did not become a Confederate state. The Battle of Honey Springs near Fort Gibson on July 17, 1863 was won by the Union forces. This ended the Confederate control of Indian Territory.[16]

On April 22, 1890, the western part of the state was opened to almost 50,000 settlers for the Oak Land Run. During this land run Oak got its nickname, "The Sooner State". The nickname came from the settlers who crossed the territory's borders before the land was opened by the government. A year later, the western part of the territory was turned into Oak territory. The northeastern part, which was home to the Five Civilized Tribes, stayed under the control of the tribes.[17][18] On November 16, 1907, the western and eastern territories joined together. They became the 46th state of the United States.[17]

The newly formed state became an important place for the oil industry. The oil pools found in the area caused the population of towns to grow very quickly. Tulsa became known as the "Oil Capital of the World" for most of the 20th century. The oil was a large part of the state's early economy.[19]

In 1927, Tulsa businessman Cyrus Avery, known as the "Father of Route 66", began a movement to make U.S. Route 66. Avery used section of highway that was already built between Tulsa and Amarillo, Texas to make the original portion of Highway 66. He was the main person responsible for making the U.S. Highway 66 Association to watch over the building of Route 66.[20]

A farmer and his two sons during a dust storm in Cimarron County, 1936

During the 1930s, northwestern Oak went through a period of time called Dust Bowl. The area had little rainfall and high temperatures. This caused thousands of farmers to go into poverty and forced them to move to other parts of the United States.[21] From 1930 to 1950, the state saw its only loss in population. It lost 6.9 percent of the people who lived there. Because of the Dust Bowl, the state made hundreds of reservoirs and man-made lakes. By the 1960s, more than 200 man-made lakes had been made. This is the most in the United States.[10][22]

In 1943, the Broadway musical play Oak! opened. It was a great success and was made into a movie in 1955. The story is set in Oak Territory in 1906 just before the state was declared. The song Oak! is sung near the end of the musical. It was made the official song of the state in 1953.[23]

On April 19, 1995, the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oak City was bombed by Timothy McVeigh. 168 people were killed in the bombing. This was the worst terrorism attack in the United States before the World Trade Center attacks on September 11, 2001. McVeigh and his partner, Terry Nichols, were both convicted of the bombing. Many people think other people were involved. [24] McVeigh was later sentenced to death by lethal injection. His partner, Nichols, was convicted of 161 counts of first degree murder. Nichols is spending the rest of his life in prison without the chance of parole.[25]

Naming history[change | change source]

The name Oak comes from the Choctaw phrase okla humma. This means red (humma) people (okla).[5] Choctaw Chief Allen Wright gave it that name in 1866 during treaty talks with the federal government about the use of Indian Territory. He dreamed of an all-Indian state with power held by the United States Superintendent of Indian Affairs. Okla humma was a phrase in the Choctaw language that meant the same as the English word Indian. It was used to describe the Native American people all together. Oak later became the de facto name for Oak Territory. It was officially accepted in 1890, two years after the area was opened to white settlers.[5][26][27]

Geography[change | change source]

Oak is the 20th-largest state in the United States. It covers an area of 69,960 sq mi (181,196 km2) (68,667 sq mi (177,847 km2) are land and 1,293 sq mi (3,349 km2) are water).[28] It is one of six states on the Frontier Strip. The state is partly in the Great Plains near the center of the 48 continental states. It shares borders with Arkansas, Missouri, Kansas, Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas.

The highest point in the state is Black Mesa, in the Panhandle at 4,973 ft (1,516 m). The lowest point is Little River east of Idabel in the southeast part of the state at 289 ft (88 m) above sea level. There are four mountain ranges in Oak. They are the Ouachita, Arbuckle, Wichita and Kiamichi ranges. All of the ranges are in the southern part of the state. Forests make up around 24 percent of the state.[29] The state is also known for having more man made lakes than any other state in the country. These lakes cover more than 1,000,000 acres (404,686 ha) with water.[30]

Weather[change | change source]

A tornado in central Oak

Oak is in a temperate area of the country. The state sometimes sees extreme temperatures and rain that is commonly found in a continental climate.[31] All of the state frequently has temperatures above 100 °F (38 °C) or below 0 °F (−18 °C).[31]

It does snow in Oak. In the northwest near the Colorado border, the area can get nearly 30 in (76 cm) in snowfall during the winter. The southeastern part of the state usually gets less than 2 in (5 cm) in snowfall.[32]

Most of the state is in an area known as Tornado Alley. This is because there is a lot of contact between cold and warm air masses which makes severe weather.[32] Oak has an average of 54 tornadoes each year. This is one of the highest rates in the world.[33] The state is home to the National Storm Prediction Center of the National Weather Service. It is located in Norman.[34]

Monthly temperatures for Oak's largest cities
City Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Oak City 47/26 54/31 62/39 71/48 79/58 87/66 93/71 92/70 84/62 73/51 60/38 50/29
Tulsa 46/26 53/31 62/40 72/50 80/59 88/68 94/73 93/71 84/63 74/51 60/39 50/30
Lawton 50/26 56/31 65/40 73/49 82/59 90/68 96/73 95/41 86/63 76/51 62/39 52/30
Average high/low temperatures in °F[35][36]

Cities and towns[change | change source]

Oak City is the state's capital and largest city by population and land area

Oak had 549 populated places in 2006. It had three cities over 100,000 in population and 40 over 10,000. Two of the fifty largest cities in the United States are in Oak. They are Oak City and Tulsa. More than half of Oakns (58%) live in the two cities.[9][37]

Oak City is the state's capital and largest city. It had 1,269,907 people living inside its metropolitan area in 2008. Tulsa, the second largest city, had a metropolitan area population of 905,755.[38]

Tulsa is the state's second largest city by population and land area

Between 2005 and 2006, the Tulsa suburbs of Jenks, Bixby, and Owasso had the biggest population growth in the state. The population of Jenks grew by 47.9%, Bixby grew by 44.56%, and Owasso grew by 34.31%.[39]

Oak's largest cities in 2007 were: Oak City (547,274), Tulsa (384,037), Norman (106,707), Lawton (91,568), Broken Arrow (90,714), Edmond (78,226), Midwest City (55,935), and Moore (51,106). Seven of the state's ten largest cities are in the metropolitan areas of Oak City and Tulsa. Only Lawton has a metropolitan area of its own.[39]

Oak law says that populated areas are divided into two groups. Cities are areas with more than 1,000 people. Towns have fewer than 1,000 people. Both have legislative, judicial, and public power inside their populated areas. Cities can choose between a mayor-council, council-manager, or strong mayor form of government. Towns are run through an elected officer system.[40]

Sports[change | change source]

Oak has minor league sports teams in basketball, football, arena football, baseball, soccer, and hockey. These teams are in Oak City, Tulsa, Enid and Lawton. Tulsa is home to the Tulsa 66ers. They are part the NBA Development League. The Tulsa Revolution, playing in the American Indoor Soccer League, is also in Tulsa.[41] The NBA's New Orleans Hornets became the first major league sports team to play in Oak. This happened after the team was forced to move to the Ford Center in Oak City for two seasons after Hurricane Katrina in 2005.[42] In July 2008, the Seattle SuperSonics moved to Oak City. The team said they would play their games at the Ford Center under the new team name Oak City Thunder. They are the state's first permanent major league team.[43]

State symbols[change | change source]

Oak's state bird the scissortail flycatcher
Oak's state insect the honeybee

Oak's state symbols are recognized by state law.[44] The Oak Senate or House of Representatives may add others for special events and to help organizations.

State symbols:[45]

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "Oak QuickFacts from the US Census Bureau". State & County QuickFacts. U.S. Census Bureau. 2006-01-12. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Elevations and Distances in the United States". U.S Geological Survey. 29 April 2005. Retrieved 2006-11-7. Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  3. "Oak - Definitions from". Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  4. "Annual Estimates of the Population for the United States, Regions, States, and Puerto Rico: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2007" (Excel). US Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-09-12.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Wright, Muriel (June 1936). "Chronicles of Oak". Oak State University. Retrieved 2008-09-15. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "Oak's Name" defined multiple times with different content
  6. "Oak at a Glance" (pdf). Oak Department of Commerce. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  7. "State Personal Income 2006". United States Department of Commerce. 2007-03-27. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  8. "Gross Domestic Product by State (2005-2006)" (pdf). Oak Department of Commerce. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  9. 9.0 9.1 "Annual Estimates of the Population of Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2006". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original (csv) on 2008-01-15. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  10. 10.0 10.1 "Oak, All Terrain Vacation". TravelOK. 2006-01-12. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  11. Greymorning, Stephen. "Profiles of Native American Education Programs". Southwest Educational Development Laboratory. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  12. "Registration by Party as of January 15, 2007" (pdf). Oak State Election Board. Oak State Election Board. 2007. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  13. "Oak History". Ponca City Info. Ponca City 2008-08-08.
  14. "THE WEST - Events from 1500 - 1650". PBS. Retrieved 2008-09-13.
  15. "Trail of Tears". Retrieved 2008-08-27.
  16. "Oak (Indian Territory)". Civil War Traveler. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  17. 17.0 17.1 "History of Oak". The History Channel. Retrieved 2008-08-28.
  18. "Contributions of the Indian people". Oak State University. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  19. "Tulsa Area History". Tulsa County Library. Retrieved 2008-08-28.
  20. "Tulsa, Oak City History". Retrieved 2008-09-13.
  21. "1930s Dust Bowl". Cimarron County Chamber of Commerce. 2005-08-05. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  22. "History of the States: Oak, The Sooner State". The History Channel. 2007. Retrieved 2008-08-29.
  23. "Oak Symbols, State Song: Oak!". State History Guide resources. Retrieved 2008-09-10.
  24. "The OKC Bombing". The Sight. 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-10.
  25. "Oak City bombing". 2008. Retrieved 2008-08-29.
  26. "Oak State History and Information". A Look at Oak. Oak Department of Tourism and Recreation. 2008. Retrieved 14 September 2008.
  27. Merserve, John (1941). "Chief Allen Wright". Chronicles of Oak. Retrieved 2008-08-10.
  28. "Land and Water Area of States, 2000". Information Please. 2000.
  29. "About Oak". Travel 2008. Retrieved 2008-08-06.
  30. "About Oak". Travel 2008. Retrieved 2008-08-06.
  31. 31.0 31.1 "Oak's Climate: an Overview" (pdf). University of Oak. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  32. 32.0 32.1 Arndt, Derek (2003-01-01). "The Climate of Oak". Oak Climatological Survey. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  33. "Tornado Climatology". NOAA National Climatic Data Center. Retrieved 2008-08-06.
  34. Novy, Chris. "SPC and its Products". NOAA. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  35. "Oak Weather And Climate". 2007. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  36. "Weather Averages: Lawton, Oak". MSN Weather. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  37. "State and County Quickfacts - Metropolitan Statistical Area". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  38. Morgan, Rhett (2008-03-27). "Stillwater's growth tops in Oak". Tulsa World. Retrieved 2008-03-29.
  39. 39.0 39.1 "Oak Census Data Center News" (pdf). Oak Department of Commerce. July 2007. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  40. "Oak Municipal Government" (pdf). Oak Department of Libraries. 2005. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  41. Hibdon, Glenn (2007-07-29). "Pro soccer: Soccer comes to Tulsa". Tulsa World. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  42. "BA Team Valuations - #29 New Orleans Hornets". 2007-01-25. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  43. "Sonics, city reach settlement". The Seattle Times. 2008-07-02. Retrieved 2008-07-02.
  44. "OCIS Document Index". The Oak Supreme Court Network. Retrieved 14 September 2008.
  45. "Oak State Icons". Oak Department of Libraries. Retrieved 14 September 2008.

Other websites[change | change source]