In 1910, shortly after Oklahoma became a state, its population was 1,657,155. The population increased each year until the 1930s, when it reached a total of 2,396,040 people. Between 1930 and 1950, however, the population decreased. Oklahoma was hit by both the national economic depression and the drought that created the Dust Bowl in the 1930s. Many farmers, unable to make a living, left the state and became migrant workers. During World War II (1939-1945) many people left Oklahoma to work in war plants in other localities.
A further drop in population occurred when production stabilized or even fell in some of the great oil fields. In Seminole County, for example, the population grew rapidly between 1920 and 1930, when its oil wells were being heavily exploited. By 1960 its population had fallen to a level little higher than that in 1920.
Since 1950, however, Oklahoma’s population has gradually increased, and by 2008 it had reached 3,642,361. This figure represents an increase of 9.7 percent over 1990. Population densities generally decline from east to west across the state, and the highest densities are found in the metropolitan areas. The average population density for the state in 2006 was 20 persons per sq km (52 per sq mi). "Oklahoma" © Emmanuel BUCHOT, Encarta, Wikipedia
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