Oklahoma is a south-central state in the US – and it’s not just famous for being the setting of a famous musical! There is plenty about the state that many people may not realise – and for this reason, it’s a great idea to take a look through some of the lesser-known facts and figures surrounding the region.
How much do you actually know about a state that over four million people call home? Let’s take a quick look and run through 19 interesting facts about Oklahoma!
- Oklahoma is one of three states that specifically produces helium – for balloons and otherwise!
- Around 24% of Oklahoma is forestry, and there are almost 34 million acres of farmland. Therefore, it is one of the greenest states in the region!
- Of all the states in the US, Oklahoma sits at around the midway point in terms of size. It’s the 20th biggest state overall.
- The state beverage of Oklahoma is milk – maybe thanks to all that farmland!
- You’ll also find that the state is famous for its fiddles and its traditional square dances.
Oklahoma State Flag
- Oklahoma is the birthplace of voicemail, created by Tulsa local Gordon Matthews, in 1982. Of course, voicemail started life as recorded messages on tape machines long before we started having messages built into our phone plans.
- Oklahoma is a fairly young state, on the whole, 24% of its population is said to be younger than 18 years old – with only 13.2% of the population older than 65.
- Oklahoma’s name derives from ‘okla humma’, a phrase used in Choctaw. It translates into ‘Native American’ or similar.
- Oklahoma is the tornado capital of the US. More tornadoes – at least major storms – tear through the state per square mile than any other state in the country.
- The state is also home to more Native American people than in any other. It’s home to several tribes, which use Oklahoma as their headquarters.
- There are said be more women in Oklahoma than men, though this is based on prior census data.
- Oklahoma’s motto is ‘labour conquers all things’, or ‘Labor Omnia Vincit’.
- The state’s national emblem is a rather festive one – mistletoe! It’s been a state staple since the late 19th century.
- Oklahoma is also famous for its red dirt. Much century of the dirt in the state is this colour thanks to sand weathering.
- Oklahoma City is home to the National Cowboy Hall of Fame. Rather fitting, given the cowboy image the state cultivates!
- The state is also the birthplace of the shopping trolley and the electric guitar.
- The state was the 46th to enter the Union, in 1907 – making it a late entry.
- While there is plenty of lake land in Oklahoma, it has more man-made bodies of water of this size than any other state in the USA.
- Famous people to come from Oklahoma include the actor James Garner, legendary baseball player Mickey Mantle, actors Brad Pit and Jeanne Tripplehorn, and singer Reba McIntire.
Do you know any fun, strange or just plain interesting facts about Oklahoma you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments section below!
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