Historic Downtown Pawhuska
Location of Pawhuska, Oklahoma
|• Total||3.8 sq mi (9.7 km2)|
|• Land||3.8 sq mi (9.7 km2)|
|• Water||0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)|
|Elevation||820 ft (250 m)|
|• Density||966.4/sq mi (373.1/km2)|
|Time zone||Central (CST) (UTC-6)|
|• Summer (DST)||CDT (UTC-5)|
|ZIP codes||74009, 74056|
|GNIS feature ID||1096476|
Pawhuska is a city in and the county seat of Osage County, Oklahoma, United States, and the capital of the federally recognized Osage Nation. It is in the Tulsa metropolitan area, which includes part of Osage County.
The population of the city was 3,589 at the 2010 census, a decline of 1.2 percent from 3,629 at the 2000 census. It was named after the 19th-century Osage chief, Paw-Hiu-Skah, which means "White Hair" in English.
The Osage tribal government, which opened offices in Pawhuska in 1872 when its reservation was established in Indian Territory, continues to be based in the city. The United States' first Boy Scout troop was organized here in 1909.
The town, originally known as Deep Ford, was established in 1872 with the reservation for the Osage Nation, part of Indian Territory. The Osage Indian Agency was located along Bird Creek. One of the three main bands of the tribe settled here. Traders followed, building stores during 1872 and 1873. Pawhuska's first newspaper, the Indian Herald (also known as Wah-Sha-She News.), was founded in 1875 by George Edward Tinker, an Osage who became the father of Clarence L. Tinker, highest-ranking Native American officer in the US Army. The first post office opened in 1876.
During the Osage oil boom of the 1910s and 1920s, Pawhuska was the site of public lease options. The population grew to 6,414 by 1920. The Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railroad extended its line from Owen, a community in Washington County, to Pawhuska in 1923. As the oil boom declined and the Great Depression set in, the population declined. The steady decline has continued through each census to the present.
Other than cattle ranches nearby, local employment consisted primarily of a brick plant, a creamery, an ice factory, and a rock crusher. The Osage Nation has opened a gaming casino here, hoping to generate revenue for the tribe.
As of the census of 2000, there were 3,629 people, 1,513 households, and 954 families residing in the city. The population density was 966.4 people per square mile (372.7/km²). There were 1,802 housing units at an average density of 479.9 per square mile (185.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 64.98% White, 2.78% African American, 25.46% Native American, 0.25% Asian, 0.52% from other races, and 6.01% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.85% of the population.
There were 1,513 households out of which 29.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 44.7% were married couples living together, 14.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.9% were non-families. 33.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 18.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.37 and the average family size was 3.02.
In the city the population was spread out with 27.8% under the age of 18, 7.3% from 18 to 24, 23.0% from 25 to 44, 22.2% from 45 to 64, and 19.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 88.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 78.2 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $25,156, and the median income for a family was $31,599. Males had a median income of $25,682 versus $17,690 for females. The per capita income for the city was $13,916. About 13.7% of families and 17.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 22.3% of those under age 18 and 14.9% of those age 65 or over.
Pawhuska has a home rule charter form of government.
The first Boy Scout troop is claimed to have been organized in Pawhuska, in May 1909 by John F. Mitchell, a missionary priest from England sent to St. Thomas Episcopal Church by the Church of England. On Independence day weekend 2009, the Pawhuska boy scout troop celebrated its centennial with a mini-jamboree attended by over 300 scouts from across the United States.
The 2013 film, August: Osage County, was set in Osage County.
- Louis F. Burns, historian and author of 13 books about the Osage Indians
- G. R. Carter, jockey
- Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman, cookbook author, blogger and TV host
- Lucy Tayiah Eads, Kaw tribal chief
- Ben Johnson, actor
- John Joseph Matthews, historian and author
- Mitch Schauer, creator of The Angry Beavers
- Larry Sellers, actor
- Chief Jay Strongbow, character portrayed by Philadelphia-born professional wrestler Luke Joseph Scarpa.
- Clarence L. Tinker, United States Air Force general and namesake of Tinker Air Force Base, near Oklahoma City
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
- MuniNet Guide: Pawhuska, Oklahoma.
- May, Jon D. "Pawhuska." Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture. (retrieved 30 Jan 2010)
- May, Jon D. Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture. "Osage County". Retrieved September 25, 2011.
- "Major General Clarence L. Tinker", Retrieved January 17, 2012.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- Osage County Historical Museum
- "Osage historian, lecturer Louis Burns dies at 92". Pawhuska Journal-Capital (Osage Nation Museum). 2012-05-22. Retrieved 2012-06-09.
- "Lucy Tayiah Eads". Kansas Historical Society. Retrieved 10 April 2014.
- Kenny A. Franks, The Osage Oil Boom (Oklahoma City: Oklahoma Heritage Association, 1989). *Osage County Profiles (Pawhuska, Okla.: Osage County Historical Society, 1978).
- "Pawhuska," Vertical File, Research Division, Oklahoma Historical Society, Oklahoma City.
- Les Warehime, History of Ranching the Osage (Tulsa, Okla.: W. W. Publishing, 2000).