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Portal:Oklahoma

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Oklahoma /ˌkləˈhmə/ (About this sound listen) (Cherokee: Asgaya gigageyi / ᎠᏍᎦᏯ ᎩᎦᎨᏱ;[1] or translated ᎣᎦᎳᎰᎹ (òɡàlàhoma), Pawnee: Uukuhuúwa, Cayuga: Gahnawiyoˀgeh) is a state located in the South Central United States. Oklahoma is the 20th most extensive and the 28th most populous of the 50 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 the choicest pieces of land before the official opening date, and the Indian Appropriations Act of 1889, which opened the door for white settlement in America's Indian Territory. The name was settled upon statehood, Oklahoma Territory and Indian Territory were merged and Indian was dropped from the name. On November 16, 1907, Oklahoma became the 46th state to enter the union. Its residents are known as Oklahomans, or informally "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. In 2007, it had one of the fastest-growing economies in the United States, ranking among the top states in per capita income growth and gross domestic product growth. 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

Selenite Crystals.jpg

Great Salt Plains Lake is a reservoir located within the Salt Plains National Wildlife Refuge in Alfalfa County, Oklahoma in the United States named because of the salt flats in the area and for the Salt Fork Arkansas River, which is dammed to form the lake.

Created in 1940, the lake, along with Ralstin Island, is home to heron, egret and ibis. Great Salt Plains Lake expands across 8,690 acres (35.2 km2), has 41 miles (66 km) of waterfront and is shallow and salty. The average depth of the lake is only 3 feet (1 m) at normal pool. The sodium content of the lake is approximately 50% that of the ocean. The fish vary from catfish, saugeye, sandbass and hybrid striper.

On the west edge of the lake, visitors can dig for selenite crystals. These crystals feature an hourglass inclusion which is unique to the Great Salt Plains. Scientists believe that salt was deposited during repeated water-level rises of a shallow sea millions of years ago. The supply of salt is kept intact by saline groundwater that flows just a few feet below the surface. When the water evaporates, a layer of salt remains on the surface. This process also plays a role in the formation of selenite crystals that visitors covet. (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 picture

American bison k5680-1.jpg
Credit: Jack Dykinga
Oklahoma's state mammal, the American Bison.

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

Chuck Norris in Iraq in 2006.jpg

Carlos "Chuck" Norris, born March 10, 1940 in Ryan, Oklahoma, is an American martial artist, action star, and Hollywood actor who is best known for playing Cordell "Cord" Walker on Walker, Texas Ranger, his training with Bruce Lee and for his iconically tough image.

After High School Norris joined the United States Air Force as an Air Policeman in 1958 and was sent to Osan Air Base, South Korea. It was in South Korea that Norris acquired the nickname Chuck and began his training in Tang Soo Do (tangsudo), an interest that would lead to black belts in that art and the founding of the Chun Kuk Do ("Universal Way") form. He also created the education associations United Fighting Arts Federation and "KickStart" (formerly "Kick Drugs Out of America"), a middle school and high school–based program intended to give at-risk children a focus point in life through the martial arts. When he returned to the United States, he continued to act as an AP at March Air Force Base California. Norris was discharged in August of 1962. He worked for the Northrop Corporation and opened a chain of karate schools, which Chad McQueen, Steve McQueen's son, attended. (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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  1. ^ http://www.omniglot.com/writing/cherokee.htm
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