America, Oklahoma

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America is a ghost town[1] in southeastern McCurtain County, Oklahoma, United States. It was located 7 miles southeast of Haworth.[2] The town was named after America Stewart, wife of Tom Stewart, a local resident.[2]

History

America grew around a sawmill built by William Spencer and his three brothers in 1907. The Spencer family built 40 houses to lease to sawmill workers,[3] and by 1910 there were 200 people living in America. In 1911, after all the timber had been cut, Spencer opened a cotton gin and general store and became a cotton buyer.[3] Cotton grown on the cleared land was shipped out by the Arkansas and Choctaw Railway ('Frisco) that ran through the town.[3] After cotton production declined in the 1920s, most residents moved out. The cotton gin closed in 1933,[3] around the time when the Great Depression was at its worst. The post office, established since July 24, 1903, was disestablished on February 15, 1944. [3][2] The general store closed the next year, completing the decline.[3]

America is located at 33°48′56″N 94°32′58″W / 33.81556°N 94.54944°W / 33.81556; -94.54944. Today, part of the former townsite of America is in the Ouachita National Forest. Only two old houses and a railroad marker remain.[3]

References

  1. ^ Etter, Jim (May 1, 1996). Ghost-Town Tales of Oklahoma: Unforgettable Stories of Nearly Forgotten Places. Stillwater, Oklahoma, United States of America: New Forums Press. pp. 248. ISBN 0-913507-74-1, 978-0913507742. 
  2. ^ a b c Shirk, George; Wright, Muriel H (1987). Oklahoma Place Names. Norman, Oklahoma: University of Oklahoma Press. pp. 288. ISBN 0-8061-2028-2, 9780806120287. http://books.google.com/books?id=KpAmsIFdutAC. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g Morris, John (1977). Ghost Towns of Oklahoma. Norman, Oklahoma: University of Oklahoma Press. pp. 229. ISBN 0-8061-1420-7, 9780806114200. http://books.google.com/books?id=fSqmnpHFEF0C.