Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma

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Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma
Pottawatomie county oklahoma courthouse.jpg
Pottawatomie County Courthouse in Shawnee
Map of Oklahoma highlighting Pottawatomie County
Location in the U.S. state of Oklahoma
Map of the United States highlighting Oklahoma
Oklahoma's location in the U.S.
Founded 1891
Named for Potawatomi people
Seat Shawnee
Largest city Shawnee
 • Total 793 sq mi (2,054 km2)
 • Land 788 sq mi (2,041 km2)
 • Water 5.7 sq mi (15 km2), 0.7%
Population (est.)
 • (2013) 71,158
 • Density 88/sq mi (34/km²)
Congressional district 5th
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5

Pottawatomie County is a county located in the U.S. state of Oklahoma. As of the 2010 census, the population was 69,442.[1] Its county seat is Shawnee.[2]

Pottawatomie County is part of the Shawnee, OK Micropolitan Statistical Area, which is included in the Oklahoma City–Shawnee, OK Combined Statistical Area.


Pottawatomie County was carved out of land originally given to the Creek and Seminole after their forced removal from Georgia and Florida. After the Civil War, the Creek and Seminole were forced to cede their lands back to the federal government, and the area of Pottawatomie County was used to resettle the Iowa, Sac and Fox, Absentee Shawnee, Potawatomi and Kickapoo tribes.[3]

Non-Indian settlement began on September 22, 1891 when all the tribes except the Kickapoo agreed to land allotment, where communal reservation land was divided and allotted to individual members of the tribes. The remaining land was opened to settlement.[3]

During the land run, Pottawatomie County was organized as County "B" with Tecumseh as the county seat. In 1892, the voters of the county elected to rename County "B" as Pottawatomie County after the Potawatomi Indians.

In 1895, the Kickapoo gave up their land rights and their land was given away to white settlers in the last land run in Oklahoma.

In 1930, Shawnee, now bigger in size than Tecumseh, was approved by the voters to become the new county seat.[3]

On May 19, 2013, during an outbreak of tornadoes, a mobile home park was nearly destroyed killing a 79-year-old man and injuring at least 6 others as well as damaging at least 35 structures. Frame and brick homes west of Shawnee were also affected.[4]


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 793 square miles (2,050 km2), of which 788 square miles (2,040 km2) is land and 5.7 square miles (15 km2) (0.7%) is water.[5]

Adjacent counties


Historical population
Census Pop.
1900 26,412
1910 43,595 65.1%
1920 46,028 5.6%
1930 66,572 44.6%
1940 54,377 −18.3%
1950 43,517 −20.0%
1960 41,486 −4.7%
1970 43,134 4.0%
1980 55,239 28.1%
1990 58,760 6.4%
2000 65,521 11.5%
2010 69,442 6.0%
Est. 2014 71,811 [6] 3.4%
U.S. Decennial Census[7]
1790-1960[8] 1900-1990[9]
1990-2000[10] 2010-2013[1]
Age pyramid for Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma, based on census 2000 data.

As of the census of 2010,[11] there were 69,442 people, 25,911 households, and 18,227 families residing in the county. The population density was 34/km² (88/mi²). There were 29,139 housing units at an average density of 14/km² (37/mi²). The racial makeup of the county was 76.3% white, 2.9% black or African American, 12.9% Native American, 0.6% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 0.1% from other races, and 6.3% from two or more races. About 4% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race, while 9% were of American, 17% German, 14% Irish and 10% English ancestry according to 2010 census. About 90.6% spoke English and 4.2% Spanish as their first language.

There were 25,911 households, out of which 34.5% included children under the age of 18, 51.9% were married couples living together, 13.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 5.1% had a male householder with no wife present, and 29.7% were non-families. About a quarter of households consisted of a single individual and 9.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.56 and the average family size was 3.04.

In the county, the population was spread out with 25% under the age of 18, 10.2% from 18 to 24, 24.6% from 25 to 44, 25.9% from 45 to 64, and 14.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 92.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 88 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $41,332, and the median income for a family was $50,399. Males had a median income of $39,580 versus $27,495 for females. The per capita income for the county was $20,700. About 14% of families and 18% of the population were below the poverty line, including 26.4% of those under age 18 and 10.3% of those age 65 or over.

Government and infrastructure

The Pioneer Library System operates branch libraries in nine cities in Pottawatomie, Cleveland, and McClain counties.[12]

The Oklahoma Department of Corrections operates the Mabel Bassett Correctional Center in an unincorporated area in the county, near McLoud.[13]


Voter Registration and Party Enrollment as of January 15, 2012[14]
Party Number of Voters Percentage
  Democratic 18,354 50.92%
  Republican 13,586 37.69%
  Unaffiliated 4,105 11.39%
Total 36,045 100%
Presidential election results[15]
Year Republican Democrat
2008 69.18% 17,753 30.82% 7,910
2004 66.59% 17,215 33.41% 8,638
2000 59.31% 13,235 39.27% 8,763


Major highways


The Shawnee Regional Airport is located 2 nautical miles (3.7 km) northwest from the central business district of Shawnee. It is classified as a general aviation airport.




Unincorporated communities

NRHP Sites

The following sites in Pottawatomie County are listed on the National Register of Historic Places:

  • Aldridge Hotel, Shawnee
  • Barnard Elementary School, Tecumseh
  • Beard Cabin, Shawnee
  • Bell Street Historic District, Shawnee
  • Billington Building, Shawnee
  • H. T. Douglas Mansion and Garage, Shawnee
  • Governors Mansion, Shawnee
  • Kerfoot House, Shawnee


  1. 1.0 1.1 "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved November 12, 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Willam H. Mullins, "Pottawatomie County," Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture, Accessed April 4, 2015.
  4. Lackey, Katharine; Welch, William M. (May 19, 2013). "Tornadoes hit Plains, Midwest; 1 dead in Okla". USA Today. Retrieved 20 May 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved February 22, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved February 22, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved February 22, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. Forstall, Richard L., ed. (March 27, 1995). "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved February 22, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  10. "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. April 2, 2001. Retrieved February 22, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  11. "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  12. "Pioneer Library System to buy Borders bookstore building in Norman". NewsOK. The Oklahoman. September 27, 2011. Retrieved 2011-10-25.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  13. "Mabel Bassett Correctional Center." Oklahoma Department of Corrections. Retrieved on November 22, 2010.
  14. http://www.ok.gov/elections/documents/reg_0112.pdf
  15. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". Retrieved 2011-06-11.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

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