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Miami, Oklahoma
City
Downtown Miami (2008)
Downtown Miami (2008)
Location within Ottawa County and Oklahoma
Location within Ottawa County and Oklahoma
Country United States
State Oklahoma
County Ottawa
Area
 • Total 10.92 sq mi (28.29 km2)
 • Land 10.84 sq mi (28.07 km2)
 • Water 0.09 sq mi (0.22 km2)
Elevation
797 ft (243 m)
Population
 (2020)
 • Total 12,969
 • Estimate 
(2019)
13,088
 • Density 1,207.60/sq mi (466.25/km2)
Time zone UTC-6 (CST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-5 (CDT)
ZIP code
74354-74355
Area code 539/918
FIPS code 40-48000
GNIS feature ID 1095343
Website Miami, Oklahoma

Miami ( my-AM) is a city in and county seat of Ottawa County, Oklahoma, United States, founded in 1891. Lead and zinc mining were established by 1918, causing the area's economy to boom.

This area was part of Indian Territory. Miami is the capital of the federally recognized Miami Tribe of Oklahoma, after which it is named; the Modoc Tribe of Oklahoma, the Ottawa Tribe of Oklahoma, the Peoria Tribe of Indians, and the Shawnee Tribe. As of the 2020 census, the population was 12,969.

History

Miami began in a rather unusual way, compared to other towns in Indian Territory. The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture quotes Velma Nieberding, author of the History of Ottawa County, as saying, "... it was settled in a business-like way by men of vision who looked into the future and saw possibilities. It didn't just grow. It was carefully planned."

W.C. Lykins is credited as the driving force for the creation of the town. He petitioned the U.S. Congress to pass legislation on March 3, 1891 to establish the town. He met with Thomas F. Richardville, chief of the Miami tribe, who agreed to meet in turn with the U.S. Indian Commission and the Ottawa tribe. That meeting resulted in Congress authorizing the secretary of the Interior Department to approve the townsite purchase from the Ottawas. Lykins, Richardville and Manford Pooler, chief of the Ottawa, are identified in historical accounts as "fathers of Miami."

Lykins' company, the Miami Town Company, bought 588 acres (238 ha) of land from the Ottawa for ten dollars an acre. They held an auction of lots on June 25–26, 1891. By the time Miami incorporated in 1895, it had more than 800 residents. The discovery of rich deposits of lead and zinc under Quapaw land a few miles north, caused Miami to boom. Its population was 1,893 at the time of statehood in 1907, and increased to 6,802 by 1920.

Geography

Miami is located near 36°53′1″N 94°52′34″W / 36.88361°N 94.87611°W / 36.88361; -94.87611 (36.883539, −94.876018). According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 9.8 square miles (25 km2), of which 9.7 square miles (25 km2) is land and 0.1 square miles (0.26 km2) (0.82%) is water.

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1900 1,527
1910 2,907 90.4%
1920 6,802 134.0%
1930 8,064 18.6%
1940 8,345 3.5%
1950 11,801 41.4%
1960 12,869 9.1%
1970 13,880 7.9%
1980 14,237 2.6%
1990 13,142 −7.7%
2000 13,704 4.3%
2010 13,570 −1.0%
2019 (est.) 13,088 −3.6%
Sources:

As of the 2010 census, there were 13,570 people, 5,315 households, and 3,337 families residing in the city. a one percent decline from 13,704 at the 2000 census. The population density was 1,258.7 people per square mile (485.9/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 68.9% white, 1.3% African American, 17.1% Native American, 0.5% Asian, 2% Pacific Islander, 2.1% from other races, and 8% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race made up 4.8% of the population.

There were 5,315 households, out of which 31.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 44.6% were married couples living together, 15% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.2% were non-families. Single individuals living alone accounted for 31.9% of households and individuals 65 years of age or older living alone accounted for 14.7% of households. The average household size was 2.46 and the average family size was 3.07.

In the city, the population was spread out, with 24.7% under the age of 18, 57.1% from 18 to 64, and 18.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35.8 years. The population was 53.2% female and 46.8% male.

The median income for a household in the city was $34,561, and the median income for a family was $42,313. Males had a median income of $32,699 versus $25,320 for females. About 14.2% of families and 19.2% of the population were below the poverty line.

In 2020, about one in four residents lived in poverty.

Coleman Theatre

Coleman Theater in Miami, OK
Coleman Theatre, 2008

Miami is home to the historic Coleman Theatre, located at 103 N. Main St.

Designed by the Kansas City, Missouri, Boller Bros. Architectural Firm, the 1600 seat Coleman Theatre was built by George L. Coleman Sr. and enjoyed a festive grand opening on April 18, 1929. At a cost of $600,000 to construct, the elegant Louis XV interior includes gold leaf trim, silk damask panels, stained glass panels, marble accents, a carved mahogany staircase, Wurlitzer pipe organ, decorative plaster moldings, and bronze railings. In 1983 the Coleman Theatre was placed on the National Register of Historical Places.

Tours of the building are available every Tuesday through Saturday. Currently, the building is available for touring, plays, concerts, conventions, community functions, weddings, and meetings. The local non-profit community group, Miami Little Theatre, established in 1959, performs five, large-scale productions on the Coleman stage every year.

Gallery

Education

Public schools serving most of Miami are managed by the Miami Public Schools school district. The high school is Miami High School, whose mascot is the Wardog. The Wardog is a mascot unique to Miami and has not been adopted as a mascot by any other school in the United States.

A portion of northern Miami is within the Commerce Public Schools school district.

Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College was accredited initially in 1925 by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. In addition to its certificate programs, it has working relationships with other higher education institutions in the state to promote transfers of students seeking four-year college degrees. In 2015 the two-year community college had about 2,000 students.

Transportation

Miami is on Interstate 44 and U.S. Route 69, and is approximately two miles (3.2 km) from U.S. Route 59.

Pelivan Transit, owned and operated by Grand Gateway EDA & Northeast Oklahoma Tribal Transit Consortium, provides a trolley loop in Miami, as well as certain on-demand bus services.

Miami is served by Miami Regional Airport (KMIO; FAA Identifier MIO), with a 5,020-foot (1,530 m) paved runway. Commercial air transportation is available from Joplin Regional Airport, about 34 miles (55 km) northeast, or Tulsa International Airport, about 85 miles (137 km) southwest.

Notable people

Sidewalk Highway
"Sidewalk highway" stretch of Route 66 near Miami, 2010
  • Keith Anderson – musician
  • David Froman – actor
  • Cassie Gaines – singer
  • Steve Gaines – musician
  • Carol Littleton – film editor
  • Mackenzie McKee - reality TV personality
  • Charles R. Nesbitt – public servant
  • Steve Owens – 1969 Heisman Trophy winner
  • Moriss Taylor – singer/TV host
  • Charles Banks Wilson – artist
  • Glad Robinson Youse - composer
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