Muskogee, Oklahoma

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Muskogee, Oklahoma
KatyHotelMuskogee.png
The Katy Hotel and Depot in Muskogee, 1907 at the time of Oklahoma statehood.
Seal of muskogee.JPG
The Great Seal of the City of Muskogee
Etymology: Creek language
Nickname(s): 
The Skoge, Oklahoma's River City, Oklahoma's Music City
Motto(s): 
We're Proud to be Okies from Muskogee
OKMap-doton-Muskogee.PNG
Location of Muskogee in Oklahoma
Coordinates: 35°45′N95°22′W / 35.75°N 95.37°W / 35.75; -95.37 Coordinates: 35°45′N95°22′W / 35.75°N 95.37°W / 35.75; -95.37
CountryUnited States
StateOklahoma
County Muskogee County
FoundedMarch 16, 1898
Government
  Type Council-manager
  MayorBob Coburn
  Vice MayorRobert Perkins
  City ManagerMike Miller
Area
  Total38.8 sq mi (100 km2)
  Land37.3 sq mi (97 km2)
  Water1.4 sq mi (4 km2)
Elevation
604 ft (184 m)
Population
(2010)
  Total39,223
  Density1,000/sq mi (390/km2)
Time zone UTC−6 (CT)
  Summer (DST) UTC−5 (CT)
Area code(s) 918
Website cityofmuskogee.com

Muskogee ( /məˈskɡ/ [1] ) is a city in and the county seat of Muskogee County, Oklahoma, United States. [2] Home to Bacone College, it lies approximately 48 miles southeast of Tulsa. The population of the city was 39,223 as of the 2010 census, a 2.4 percent increase from 38,310 at the 2000 census, [3] making it the eleventh-largest city in Oklahoma.

City Large and permanent human settlement

A city is a large human settlement. Cities generally have extensive systems for housing, transportation, sanitation, utilities, land use, and communication. Their density facilitates interaction between people, government organizations and businesses, sometimes benefiting different parties in the process.

A county seat is an administrative center, seat of government, or capital city of a county or civil parish. The term is used in Canada, China, Romania, Taiwan and the United States. County towns have a similar function in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland, and historically in Jamaica.

Muskogee County, Oklahoma County in the United States

Muskogee County is a county located in the U.S. state of Oklahoma. As of the 2010 census, the population was 70,990. The county seat is Muskogee. The county and city were named for the Muscogee (Creek) Nation. The official spelling of the name was changed to Muskogee by the post office in 1900.

Contents

The 1951 film Jim Thorpe – All-American , starring Burt Lancaster, was filmed on the campus of Bacone Indian College at Muskogee. [4] Three feature films were recently shot in Muskogee: Salvation (2007), Denizen (2010), and American Honey (2016). [5]

<i>Jim Thorpe – All-American</i> 1951 film by Michael Curtiz

Jim Thorpe – All-American is a 1951 American biographical film produced by Warner Bros. and directed by Michael Curtiz, honoring Jim Thorpe, the great Native American athlete who won medals at the 1912 Olympics and distinguished himself in various sports, both in college and on professional teams.

Burt Lancaster American film actor

Burton Stephen Lancaster was an American actor and producer. Initially known for playing "tough guys", he went on to achieve success with more complex and challenging roles. He was nominated four times for Academy Awards, and won once for his work in Elmer Gantry in 1960. He also won a Golden Globe Award for that performance and BAFTA Awards for Birdman of Alcatraz (1962) and Atlantic City (1980).

Bacone College

Bacone College, formerly Bacone Indian University, is a private four-year liberal arts college in Muskogee, Oklahoma, United States. Founded in 1880 as the Indian University by Almon C. Bacone, Bacone College is the oldest continuously operated institution of higher education in Oklahoma. The college has strong historic ties to various tribal nations, including the Cherokee Nation and the Muscogee (Creek) Nation, and also to the American Baptist Churches USA.

History

French fur traders were believed to have established a temporary village near the future Muskogee in 1806, but the first permanent European-American settlement was established in 1817 on the south bank of the Verdigris River, north of present-day Muskogee.

Verdigris River Tributary of the Arkansas River in Kansas and Oklahoma, USA

The Verdigris River is a tributary of the Arkansas River in southeastern Kansas and northeastern Oklahoma in the United States. It is about 310 miles (500 km) long. Via the Arkansas, it is part of the Mississippi River watershed.

After the passage of the Indian Removal Act of 1830 under President Andrew Jackson, the Muscogee Creek Indians were one of the Five Civilized Tribes forced out of the American Southeast to Indian Territory. They were accompanied by their slaves to this area. The Indian Agency, a two-story stone building, was built here in Muskogee. It was a site for meetings among the leaders of the Five Civilized Tribes. Today it serves as a museum. At the top of what is known as Agency Hill, it is within Honor Heights Park on the west side of Muskogee.

Indian Removal Act a law signed on May 28, 1830 by President Andrew Jackson

The Indian Removal Act was signed into law on May 28, 1830 by U.S. President Andrew Jackson. The law authorized the president to negotiate with southern Native American tribes for their removal to federal territory west of the Mississippi River in exchange for white settlement of their ancestral lands. The act has been referred to as a unitary act of systematic genocide, because it completely discriminated against an ethnic group, to the point of certain death of vast numbers of its population. The Act was signed by Jackson and it was strongly enforced under his administration and that of Martin Van Buren, which extended until 1841.

Andrew Jackson 7th president of the United States

Andrew Jackson was an American soldier and statesman who served as the seventh president of the United States from 1829 to 1837. Before being elected to the presidency, Jackson gained fame as a general in the United States Army and served in both houses of Congress. As president, Jackson sought to advance the rights of the "common man" against a "corrupt aristocracy" and to preserve the Union.

Muscogee (Creek) Nation

The Muscogee (Creek) Nation is a federally recognized Native American tribe based in the U.S. state of Oklahoma. The nation descends from the historic Creek Confederacy, a large group of indigenous peoples of the Southeastern Woodlands. Official languages include Muscogee, Yuchi, Natchez, Alabama, and Koasati, with Muscogee retaining the largest number of speakers. They commonly refer to themselves as Este Mvskokvlke. Historically, they were often referred to as one of the Five Civilized Tribes of the American Southeast.

In 1872, the Missouri–Kansas–Texas Railroad was extended to the area. A federal court was established in Muskogee in 1889, around the same time that Congress opened portions of Indian Territory to non-Native settlers via land rushes. The city was incorporated on March 19, 1898. [6]

Missouri–Kansas–Texas Railroad former American Class I railroad

The Missouri–Kansas–Texas Railway is a former Class I railroad company in the United States, with its last headquarters in Dallas. Established in 1865 under the name Union Pacific Railway, Southern Branch, it came to serve an extensive rail network in Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Missouri. In 1989, it merged with the Missouri Pacific Railroad; today, it is part of Union Pacific Railroad.

Business district c. 1910 Bird's-eye View of Business Section, Muskogee, OK.jpg
Business district c. 1910

Ohio native Charles N. Haskell moved to the city in March 1901. [7] He was instrumental in building on the land rush; he stimulated expansion of the city of more than 4,000 people to a center of business and industry by 1910, with a population of more than 25,000 inhabitants. Haskell built the first five-story business block in Oklahoma Territory; he built and owned fourteen brick buildings in the city. Most importantly, he organized and built most of the railroads running into the city, which connected it to other markets and centers of population, stimulating its business and retail, and attracting new residents.

Charles N. Haskell Governor of Oklahoma; politician

Charles Nathaniel Haskell was an American lawyer, oilman, and politician who was the first governor of Oklahoma. As a delegate to Oklahoma's constitutional convention in 1906, he played a crucial role in drafting the Oklahoma Constitution and gaining Oklahoma's admission into the United States as the 46th state in 1907. A prominent businessman in Muskogee, he helped the city grow in importance. He represented the city as a delegate in both the Oklahoma convention and an earlier convention that was a failed attempt to create a U.S. state of Sequoyah.

As Muskogee’s economic and business importance grew, so did its political power. In the years before the territory was admitted as a state, the Five Civilized Tribes continued to work on alternatives to keep some independence from European Americans. They met together August 21, 1905 to propose the State of Sequoyah, to be controlled by Native Americans. They met in Muskogee to draft its constitution, planning to have Muskogee serve as the State's capital. The proposal was vetoed by US President Theodore Roosevelt and mostly ignored by Congress; the proposed State of Sequoyah was never authorized. The US admitted the State of Oklahoma to the Union on November 16, 1907 as the 46th State.

Muskogee attracted national and international attention when, in May 2008, voters elected John Tyler Hammons as mayor. Nineteen years old at the time of his election, Hammons is among the youngest mayors in American history.

Geography

Muskogee is an economic center for eastern Oklahoma and operates the Port of Muskogee on the Arkansas River, which is accessible from the Gulf of Mexico.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 38.8 square miles (100 km2), of which 37.3 square miles (97 km2) is land and 1.4 square miles (3.6 km2) (3.69%) is water. Muskogee is near the confluence of the Arkansas River, Verdigris River and Grand River. Historically, the area around this confluence has been called Three Rivers.

It is served by U.S. Route 62, U.S. Route 64, U.S. Route 69, Oklahoma State Highway 16, Oklahoma State Highway 165, Oklahoma State Highway 351 and the Muskogee Turnpike.

Muskogee lies in the Arkansas River Valley and has a low, sea-level elevation compared to much of the rest of the state. [8] The city is on the boundary of the oak and hickory forest region of eastern Oklahoma and the prairie, Great Plains region of northeastern Oklahoma. It is a suburban community of Tulsa. [8]

The city's climate is considerably warmer and more humid than other parts of the state. [8]

Climate

These data were accessed through the WRCC and were compiled over the years 1905 to 2016. [9] The record high occurred in August 1936, and the record low in 1905.

Climate data for Muskogee, OK
MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecYear
Record high °F (°C)81
(27)
90
(32)
93
(34)
97
(36)
98
(37)
108
(42)
114
(46)
118
(48)
109
(43)
98
(37)
88
(31)
81
(27)
118
(48)
Average high °F (°C)48.8
(9.3)
53.9
(12.2)
63.3
(17.4)
73.0
(22.8)
79.9
(26.6)
87.9
(31.1)
93.6
(34.2)
93.7
(34.3)
86.1
(30.1)
75.3
(24.1)
61.7
(16.5)
51.2
(10.7)
72.4
(22.4)
Average low °F (°C)28.0
(−2.2)
31.8
(−0.1)
40.1
(4.5)
50.0
(10.0)
58.6
(14.8)
67.0
(19.4)
70.9
(21.6)
70.0
(21.1)
62.3
(16.8)
50.8
(10.4)
39.5
(4.2)
31.1
(−0.5)
50.0
(10.0)
Record low °F (°C)−11
(−24)
−14
(−26)
−2
(−19)
21
(−6)
31
(−1)
44
(7)
49
(9)
48
(9)
34
(1)
16
(−9)
6
(−14)
−7
(−22)
−14
(−26)
Average precipitation inches (mm)2.22
(56)
2.23
(57)
3.39
(86)
4.52
(115)
5.29
(134)
4.87
(124)
3.14
(80)
3.14
(80)
4.21
(107)
3.79
(96)
3.19
(81)
2.42
(61)
42.41
(1,077)
Average snowfall inches (cm)2.2
(5.6)
2.1
(5.3)
0.8
(2.0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0.2
(0.51)
0.9
(2.3)
6.2
(15.71)
Source: https://wrcc.dri.edu/cgi-bin/cliMAIN.pl?ok6130

Demographics

Historical population
CensusPop.
1900 4,254
1910 25,278494.2%
1920 30,27719.8%
1930 32,0265.8%
1940 32,3321.0%
1950 37,28915.3%
1960 38,0592.1%
1970 37,331−1.9%
1980 40,0117.2%
1990 37,708−5.8%
2000 38,3101.6%
2010 39,2232.4%
Est. 201538,456 [10] −2.0%
Sources: [11] [12] [13] [14] [15] [16]

As of the census [15] of 2000, there were 38,310 people, 15,523 households, and 9,950 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,026.0 people per square mile (396.1/km²). There were 17,517 housing units at an average density of 469.1 per square mile (181.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 61.12% White, 17.90% African American, 12.34% Native American, 0.90% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 1.57% from other races, and 6.16% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.28% of the population.

There were 15,523 households out of which 29.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.2% were married couples living together, 15.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.9% were non-families. 31.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.39 and the average family size was 3.00.

In the city the population was spread out with 25.7% under the age of 18, 9.7% from 18 to 24, 25.8% from 25 to 44, 21.4% from 45 to 64, and 17.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females, there were 88.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 83.4 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $26,418, and the median income for a family was $33,358. Males had a median income of $28,153 versus $20,341 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,351. About 14.6% of families and 19.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 25.9% of those under age 18 and 14.3% of those age 65 or over.

Arts and culture

Muskogee is home to Honor Heights Park, a World War I memorial park, notable for its azaleas and the annual Azalea Festival held each April. During the winter, people from across all 50 states travel to Muskogee to see Honor Heights transformed into the Garden of Lights, a 132-acre (0.53 km2) Christmas lights display.

Muskogee has six museums. The Five Civilized Tribes Museum preserves the art and culture of the Five Civilized Tribes. The U.S.S. Batfish and War Memorial Park's major attraction is the submarine USS Batfish. The Three Rivers Museum chronicles the history of the Three Rivers area and the railroads that helped create it. The Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame has been honoring Oklahoma musicians since 1997. The Thomas-Foreman Historic Home is an 1898 farm house preserved with the furnishings of the Indian Territory Judge John R. Thomas and his daughter and son-in-law Grant and Carolyn Foreman, Oklahoma historians and authors. The Ataloa Lodge is on the campus of Bacone College.

Two feature films were recently shot in Muskogee through a tax incentive program offered by the state: Salvation (2007) and Denizen (2010). Writer and director J.A. Steel produced both films. [5]

Muskogee is home to The Castle of Muskogee. The Castle hosts Fourth of July Fireworks sales, a Halloween festival 'Haunted Castle', a drive-through Christmas Kingdom and indoor Castle Christmas experience, and the Oklahoma Renaissance Festival, founded in 1995. The Renaissance festival draws in tens of thousands each year, hosting jousts, dancing, vendors and other events.

At the center of Muskogee's flourishing arts scene is Muskogee Little Theatre (MLT). MLT was established in 1972 from the unused Sequoyah Elementary School. The theatre puts on up to eight shows per year including youth theatre, senior theatre, holiday shows, and general community productions. The theatre is also committed to education and development arts programs including Youth Theatre camp, voice lessons, mentorships, weekend workshops and more.

The City of Muskogee Foundation provides grants to community organizations and non-profit groups throughout the Muskogee community. [17]

Government

Muskogee is governed by a council-manager form of municipal government. The city manager is the administrative leader of the government and is appointed by the city council. The city's ceremonial head is the mayor, who is a voting, at-large member of the council with limited administrative power.

The current city manager, Mike Miller and Mayor is Bob Coburn.

The city is divided into four wards, with two members of the city council elected from each. Each member of the council is elected by the city as a whole but must reside in the ward he or she represents. Elections are held on the first Tuesday in April in each even-numbered year. All elections are non-partisan; the mayor and the members of the city council receive no salary or compensation for their services.

State and federal representation

Muskogee is represented by two state representatives: State Representative Avery Frix representing House District 13 and State Representative George Faught representing House District 14. District 13 includes the west side of Muskogee while District 14 includes the east half of Muskogee. The city is represented in the state senate by State Senator Dewayne Pemberton (R-Muskogee), in Senate District 9, which includes all of Muskogee County, Oklahoma.

Both former Attorney General of Oklahoma Drew Edmondson and former Oklahoma Superintendent of Public Instruction Sandy Garrett are Muskogee natives.

The city is part of Oklahoma's 2nd congressional district, represented by U.S. Representative Markwayne Mullin (R-Muskogee). The city is also home to U.S. Senator Tom Coburn.

Crime

Since 1995, crime rate has risen by 45 percent in Muskogee. According to records by the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation, in 2002, 2008 and 2009, no murders were committed for the entire year. However, on April 10, 2010, a deadly shooting broke out at the Arrowhead Mall injuring at least five people and leaving one dead; witnesses say that the shooting was gang-related. [18] [19]

Education

There are two primary public school districts in the city of Muskogee: Muskogee Public Schools, which include the vast majority of the city limits and a large portion of Muskogee County, and Hilldale Public Schools, which covers a small southern portion of the city limits and some parts of the County south of Muskogee. Additional smaller school districts serve the smaller communities of Muskogee County.

Notably, Muskogee is the location of the Oklahoma School for the Blind, a special institution for meeting the educational needs of blind and visually impaired students residing in the state of Oklahoma.

Muskogee is home to four institutions of higher education: the public four-year Northeastern State University, the public two-year Connors State College, the public Indian Capital Technology Center and the private four-year Bacone College, which is the oldest college in the state of Oklahoma.

Points of interest

Notable people

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  15. 1 2 "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau . Retrieved 2008-01-31.
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  19. "One dead, five hurt after mall shootout". Muskogee Phoenix. April 11, 2012. Retrieved October 4, 2012.
  20. Friends - "The One With Rachel's Other Sister", Season 9, episode 8