Atoka County, Oklahoma

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Atoka County, Oklahoma
Map of Oklahoma highlighting Atoka County
Location in the state of Oklahoma
Map of the United States highlighting Oklahoma
Oklahoma's location in the U.S.
Founded 1907
Seat Atoka
Area
 • Total 990 sq mi (2,564 km2)
 • Land 978 sq mi (2,534 km2)
 • Water 12 sq mi (30 km2), 1.18%
Population (Est.)
 • (2013) 13,898
 • Density 14/sq mi (5/km²)
Congressional district 2nd
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5

Atoka County is a county located in the U.S. state of Oklahoma, and was formed before statehood from Choctaw Lands. As of the 2010 census, the population was 14,007.[1] Its county seat is Atoka.[2] The name honors a Choctaw Chief named Atoka.

History[edit]

Map of Atoka County, 1909

The area encompassed by the present Atoka County was originally part of Shappaway County in the Pushmataha District of the Choctaw Nation. About 1854, the area was formally designated Atoka County. The name, which honored Choctaw Chief Atoka, a leader of a party which migrated from Georgia to Indian Territory, was retained when Oklahoma became a state.[3]

In 1858, the Butterfield and Overland established a stage route through the area. One station, Waddell's was near Wesley, a second station, Geary's was between Waddell's and the Muddy Boggy River, while a third was at Boggy Depot.[3]

During the Civil War, Confederate troops established a supply depot named Camp Boggy Depot. After the war, the town of Atoka was established. In 1872, the Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railway (nicknamed the Katy) built a track through the county. It bypassed Boggy Depot and passed through Atoka, increasing the importance of Atoka and contributing to the decline of Boggy Depot.[3]

The economy of Atoka County has been largely built on coal mining, limestone quarrying, forestry and agriculture. Cattle raising became the leading business in the mid-twentieth century. A major employer is the Oklahoma State Penitentiary Farm (renamed the Mack H. Alford Correctional Center), a medium security prison that opened in 1933.[3]

Geography[edit]

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 990 square miles (2,564.1 km2), of which 978 square miles (2,533.0 km2) is land and 12 square miles (31.1 km2) (1.18%) is water.[4]

Atoka County is drained by North Boggy, Clear Boggy and Muddy Boggy Creeks, which are tributaries of the Red River. Atoka Reservoir is in the northern section of the county. The Ouachita Mountains are in the eastern part of the county, while the Sandstone Hills and Coastal Plains physiographic regions provide a more level terrain suitable for agriculture in the north and western part of the county.[3]

About 12 miles WSW of the town of Atoka is Boggy Depot State Park, the historic site of a once large community on the Butterfield Overland Mail stagecoach route.

Major highways[edit]

Adjacent counties[edit]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
1910 13,808
1920 20,862 51.1%
1930 14,533 −30.3%
1940 18,702 28.7%
1950 14,269 −23.7%
1960 10,352 −27.5%
1970 10,972 6.0%
1980 12,748 16.2%
1990 12,778 0.2%
2000 13,879 8.6%
2010 14,182 2.2%
Est. 2013 13,898 −2.0%
U.S. Decennial Census[5]
2013 Estimate[1]
Age pyramid for Atoka County, Oklahoma, based on census 2000 data.

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 14,182 people, 4,964 households, and 3,504 families residing in the county. The population density was 14 people per square mile (5.5/km²). There were 5,673 housing units at an average density of 6 per square mile (2/km²). 73.8% of the population were White, 13.8% Native American, 3.7% Black or African American, 0.4% Asian, 1.1% of some other race and 7.1% of two or more races. 2.9% were Hispanic or Latino (of any race). 24.5% were of American, 11.7% Irish and 8.5% German ancestry.[6] 97.4% spoke English and 1.4% Spanish as their first language.

There were 4,964 households out of which 31.30% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.90% were married couples living together, 10.20% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.40% were non-families. 27.10% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.90% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.48 and the average family size was 3.01.

In the county, the population was spread out with 23.60% under the age of 18, 8.20% from 18 to 24, 29.10% from 25 to 44, 24.30% from 45 to 64, and 14.80% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 117.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 119.90 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $24,752, and the median income for a family was $29,409. Males had a median income of $26,193 versus $18,861 for females. The per capita income for the county was $12,919. About 15.70% of families and 19.80% of the population were below the poverty line, including 25.40% of those under age 18 and 21.10% of those age 65 or over.

Voter Registration and Party Enrollment as of January 15, 2013[7]
Party Number of Voters Percentage
  Democratic 5,458 72.20%
  Republican 1,563 20.67%
  Unaffiliated 539 7.13%
Total 7,560 100%

Politics[edit]

Presidential election results[8]
Year Republican Democrat
2012 74% 3,534 26% 1,241
2008 71.9% 3,511 28.1% 1,370
2004 61.8% 3,142 38.2% 1,946
2000 54.9% 2,375 44.1% 1,906

Government and infrastructure[edit]

The Oklahoma Department of Corrections operates the Mack Alford Correctional Center in an unincorporated area, near Stringtown.[9]

Communities[edit]

  • Atoka
  • Bentley
  • Bethany
  • Blackjack
  • Boehler
  • Boggy Depot
  • Bruno
  • Burg
  • Caney
  • Centerpoint
  • Chockie
  • Cook
  • Crystal
  • Daisy
  • Dok
  • East Allison
  • East Talico
  • Farris
  • Flora
  • Forrest Hill
  • Fugate
  • Goss
  • Grassy Lake
  • Half Bank Crossing
  • Harmony
  • Hickory Hill
  • High Hill
  • Hopewell
  • Iron Stob
  • Lane
  • Limestone Gap
  • Lone Pine
  • Mayers Chapel
  • McGee Valley
  • Mt. Carmel
  • Mt. Olive
  • Negro Bend
  • New Hope
  • Nix
  • Old Farris
  • Patapoe
  • Payton Crossing
  • Pine Springs
  • Plainview
  • Pleasant Hill
  • Redden
  • Reynolds
  • Rock Springs
  • Standing Rock
  • Star
  • Stringtown
  • Taloah
  • Tushka
  • Valley View
  • Voca
  • Wards Chapel
  • Wardville
  • Webster
  • Wesley
  • West Allison
  • West Telico
  • Wilson

NRHP sites[edit]

The following sites in Atoka County are listed on the National Register of Historic Places:

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved November 8, 2013. 
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Milligan, James C. Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture. "Atoka County."[1]
  4. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  5. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". Census.gov. Retrieved April 27, 2014. 
  6. ^ "American FactFinder"
  7. ^ http://www.ok.gov/elections/documents/reg_0113.pdf
  8. ^ "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". Archived from the original on 4 June 2011. Retrieved 2011-06-11. 
  9. ^ "Mack Alford Correctional Center." Oklahoma Department of Corrections. Retrieved on November 22, 2010.

Further reading[edit]

  • Underwood, William Henry. "A History Atoka County, Oklahoma". Bryan County Heritage Association, 1997. 213.

Atoka County is the scenic theme for the 1974 movie (showing OJ Simpson) called "The Klansman" however the film was actually made in Oroville, CA (a small nowhere town that holds the largest American dam)

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 34°23′N 96°03′W / 34.38°N 96.05°W / 34.38; -96.05