Local & Regional
Wed February 16, 2011
Oklahoma City, OK – Hispanics now outnumber Native Americans in Okla.
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) New U.S. Census Bureau figures for Oklahoma show a state that's been considered the heart of the nation's Indian Country since the Trail of Tears nearly two centuries ago now has more residents who identify themselves as Hispanic than Native American.
Oklahoma is likely to maintain the nation's largest per capita population of Native Americans, but the numbers released Tuesday show that the number of Hispanics in the state has nearly doubled in the last decade.
Hispanics now make up 9 percent of the state's 3.75 million residents. Native Americans represent 8.5 percent of the population.
Oklahoma is home to dozens of sovereign tribes. But Hispanics have supplanted Native Americans as the state's largest minority primarily because of an abundance of jobs in farming, ranching, swine and poultry operations.