Oklahoma

By | Nov 16, 2009

The State of Oklahoma became the 46th State to join the United States when they were admitted to the union on November 16, 1907.

The name Oklahoma comes from the Choctaw phrase okla homma, red people. The name was suggested by Choctaw Chief Allen Wright in 1866 when the area was considered part of the Indian Territory. It was in this area that the Indian nations were removed from their ancestral homelands by the United States government in the first half of the 19th century.

Oklahoma has 50 state parks, six national parks/protected regions, two national protected forests/grasslands, and a number of wildlife preserves and conservation areas. Six percent of the state’s 10 million acres of forest is public land.

Oklahoma’s quarter was released in January of 2008. It shows the state bird, Scissortail flycatcher, flying above a field of Indian blanket wildflowers, the state wildflower.

The state flag was adopted in 1926 from a design by an Oklahoma City artist, Louise Funk Fluke. The flag features a sky blue field and pictures a Osage Indian battle shield made of buffalo skin adorned with eagle feathers and white crosses , a gray peace pipe and an olive branch.

In 1943 composer Richard Rogers and lyricist Oscar Hammerstein II came together to do what would be the first of many show musical collaborations. This first show was Oklahoma!. The Broadway production opened on March 31, 1943 and ran for then an unprecedented 2,212 performances. Oklahoma! was one of the first Broadway Musicals that incorporated the songs and dances as part of the show’s story. in 1953 the show’s title song, Oklahoma!, was made the state song.


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