85 Interesting Facts About Oklahoma

Last updated on November 27th, 2023

52. There are a number of towns in Oklahoma that have bizarre names. The list includes such names as Cookietown, Non, Slapout and more; there are nine of them.

53. An interesting fact is that Oklahoma used to be much closer to the equator in prehistoric times. Through time, it drifted northwest away from the equator.

54. Oklahoma has more female criminals than any other state in the US. It is true that this state has the most women per capita in prison.

55. The longest remaining stretch of Route 66 runs across Oklahoma for about 370 miles. Many exciting attractions can be found along this road.

A yield sign
A yield sign. Image credit – Ben Schumin

56. After the experimental yield sign was installed in Tulsa, Oklahoma, in 1950 at a dangerous intersection, the number of accidents dropped to zero.

57. Road conditions may not be a priority in this state, but the roads in Oklahoma are still considered some of the worst in the US.

58. Vinita was the first city in Oklahoma to have electricity. The city was first named Downingvill but was later renamed after the American sculptor Vinnie Ream.

59. Fort Sill army based in Lawton, Oklahoma is the final resting place of the world’s only atomic gun – Atomic Annie. This weapon was created in the 1950s during the Cold War. The gun was tested once and was never actually used in combat.

60. The 90th division of the Oklahoma State Guard participated in both the First and Second World Wars. They were also involved in the Battle for Normandy.

61. The only city in the US that was bombed during World War Two was Bois City, Oklahoma. While in training, a B17 US Bomber went off course on July 5, 1943.

62. With a rich history of wars and prisoners, it is not strange to hear that Fort Reno in El Reno is haunted. People say they heard slamming doors and footsteps.

Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)
Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) perched on a tree near its nest.

63. Kaw Lake in northern Oklahoma is home to one of the state’s largest populations of bald eagles. The largest bird’s nest was built by a pair of bald eagles, near St Petersburg, Florida, USA and measured 2.9 m (9 ft 6 in) wide and 6 m (20 ft) deep.

64. The Oklahoma state quarter features an image of the state bird, the Scissortail Flycatcher, in flight with its distinctive tail feathers spread.

65. The raccoon was chosen as the official fur animal of Oklahoma in 1989. These mammals are comfortable to live in the wild and rural areas.

American bison in the wilderness of the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge Oklahoma
American bison in the wilderness of the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge Oklahoma in the United States of America during a cold day in autumn.

66. The Bison was named the state mammal of Oklahoma in 1972. The animal has the ability to jump 6 feet vertically and it can run at speeds up to 35 miles per hour. It was also named the national mammal of the United States in 2016.

67. The official State Soil of Oklahoma is Port Silt loam. The loam is usually red but may vary from dark brown to reddish brown.

68. The State Fruit of Oklahoma is the strawberry, available all over the state. It is a local favorite found on many U-pick farms, or you can grow it yourself.

69. The State Vegetable of Oklahoma is not a vegetable but a fruit. In 2007, they declared the watermelon the official State Vegetable of Oklahoma.

70. Oklahoma is one of only two states to recognize or have an official State Meal. It is an extensive menu that reflects the historical background and modern-day agriculture.

71. The scissor-tailed flycatcher has been the state bird since 1951. The bird is a native of Oklahoma and was on the collectable coin and license plates in 2008.

72. The official State Poem of Oklahoma – “Howdy Folks” is an ode to Oklahoma Cowboy Will Rogers. David Randolph Milsten is the poet of the poem.

73. The Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building was blown up in 1995 because of a bomb that went off in a truck outside the building. The building was named for an OK native who became one of the youngest federal judges in U.S. history. Today, there is a 30,000 square foot museum and an outdoor memorial in the same place in memory of the lives lost.

74. The Marland Estate Mansion is situated in Ponca City, Oklahoma. It conserves the former home of E.W, Marland who was the founder of Marland Oil Company. The Marland Estate Mansion is open to the public, and it hosts several original room spaces as well as other small historical museums such as the Bryant Baker Gallery, Carl and Carolyn Renfro Gallery, Marland Oil Museum, and John Duncan Forsyth Room.

75. The American Pigeon Museum has educated visitors about the pigeon since it was established in the 1970s. The museum and library is in Oklahoma City.

76. The National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum is in Oklahoma City, OK. The museum was founded in 1955 and has an internationally renowned collection of Western art and artifacts.

77. A kid-size corral can be found at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City. Remember to ask about it the next time you visit the museum.

78. The American Banjo Museum can be found in Oklahoma City. It celebrates the Banjo’s history and its role in American music genres like jazz and folk.

Flamingos at the Oklahoma city zoo.
Flamingos at the Oklahoma city zoo.

79. Visitors will find the Oklahoma City Zoo at the heart of the city. It offers visitors a unique experience that displays the beauty of most of the magnificent animals in the world. Interestingly, the Oklahoma City Zoo was established in 1902 and is home to close to 12 attractions including carnivorous cats, two species of bears, and Asian elephants that offer learning opportunities and in-depth exploration to its visitors.

80. The Oklahoma Aquarium is a must-see attraction site in the state. It is home to amazing aquatic life in immersive exhibits. Visitors who visit the Oklahoma Aquarium get to see 300-pound sea turtles, Caribbean fish, and reef sharks from an underwater observation location. It has the largest bull sharks. The Oklahoma Aquarium is a perfect place for adults and kids of all ages.

81. The Red Earth Festival in Oklahoma City celebrates Native American Cultures. The event is held each year at the Cox Convention Center in downtown Oklahoma City.

82. You can be arrested, fined, and even jailed in Oklahoma for making ugly faces at a dog. That means any dog, so don’t make ugly faces at your dog.

83. Cowboys in Oklahoma are not allowed to wear boots to bed. They may be arrested and face criminal charges.

84. It would be best if you did not take a bite out of someone else’s hamburger in Oklahoma. That’s because it’s illegal to do so in this state.

85. Tulsa, Oklahoma, means ‘old town’ from a Creek word, “Tallasi.” It pays homage to the Creek tribe that settled in this area and the city’s connection to its roots.

Oklahoma food facts

Oklahomans love tasty food, and you can enjoy their excellent food too. Besides, you can enjoy the delicious meals at various food joints. You can be sure to enjoy their steak at a steakhouse or warming up the grill. While at it, taste their fountain drink, cold beer, and tater tots. Oklahomans love the food grown and raised on their land, and it is rich with a culinary heritage such as Indian tacos, barbecue, and chicken-fried steak. 

Treat yourself to the flavorful and juicy Oklahoma onion burger. The tasty ingredients of this dish are Oklahoman-style onion-smashed patties melted together with double American cheese.

A delicious dish from Oklahoma is Tamale pie, which doesn’t have tamales. A tomato sauce with various ingredients is covered with cornbread mix and baked in the oven.

Oklahoma has some of the best biscuits and gravy dish variations. A flaky biscuit at the bottom and the gravy thickened with pork drippings are expected.

Rocky Mountain Oysters or Calf Fries is another famous dish in Oklahoma. Thederized calf testicles are battered, fried, and served with cocktail sauce.

Remember to try out the authentic and flavorful Banh Mi in Oklahoma. Tofu or savory meat is placed with fresh vegetables inside a soft, airy baguette.

The tasty snack, fried okra, is an Oklahoma treat you should try. Okra is cut into slices, dredged in a cornmeal mixture, and then fried to golden brown.

Arbuckle Mountain fried pies have come a long way to become one of the favorite foods of Oklahoma. They are available in popular flavors like pecan, lemon cream, and cherry.

An all-American favorite, pecan pie is also very popular among residents in Oklahoma. It is also designated as one of the Oklahoma State Meals.

A New Year’s Day tradition in Oklahoma includes the famous black-eyed peas. A classic dish is hog jowls, collard greens, and black-eyed peas.

Quick facts about Oklahoma and state symbols

State AbbreviationOK
State CapitalOklahoma City
Largest CityOklahoma City
State SizeTotal (Land + Water): 69,898 sq miles; Land Only: 68,667 sq miles
(Estimate July 1, 2023 from United States Census Bureau)
StatehoodNovember 16, 1907
State rank by population28th
State rank by date of formation46th
State rank by area20th
Number of Counties77
Complete list of 50 states and number of counties in each
DemonymOklahoman; Okie (colloq.)
Bordering StatesArkansas, Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, New Mexico, Texas
Official LanguageEnglish
Highest PointBlack Mesa
4,975 ft (1516 m)
Lowest pointLittle River at Arkansas border
289 ft (88 m)
Mean elevation1,300 feet above sea level
Length 465 miles (750 km)
Width230 miles (450 km)
GovernorKevin Stitt (R)
Lieutenant GovernorMatt Pinnell (R)
Electoral Votes7
State MottoLabor omnia vincit (Labor conquers all things)
State NicknameSooner State
% Water1.8
Famous peopleDan Hampton (Pro Football player)
Bullet Rogan (Baseball player)
Marques Haynes (Basketball player)
Brad Pitt (Actor)
Garth Brooks (Singer)
State TreeRedbud
State amphibianBullfrog
State animalBison
State BirdScissor-tailed Flycatcher
State ButterflyBlack Swallowtail
State Furbearer Animal
State fishWhite bass
State fruitStrawberry
State FossilSaurophaganax Maximus
State FlowerOklahoma Rose
State flying mammalMexican free-tailed bat
State game birdWild turkey
State InsectHoney bee
State reptileCollared lizard
State vegetableWatermelon
State Wild flowerIndian blanket
Longitude94° 26' W to 103° W
Latitude33°37' N to 37° N
Time ZoneCentral Time Zone
Area Codes405, 580, 918
Table last updatedDecember 21, 2023