Quapaw is a town in Ottawa County, Oklahoma, United States. The population was 906 at the 2010 census,a 7.9 percent decline from 984 as of the 2000 census. Quapaw is part of the Joplin, Missouri metropolitan area
|Nickname(s): "The Hay Capital"|
Location within Ottawa County and the state of Oklahoma
In 1891 Kansas farmer Isaac Bingham moved his family south into Ottawa County. The family established a community and opened several businesses and Quapaw Chief John Quapaw donated land for a community school. The Kansas City, Fort Scott and Memphis Railroad established a railroad stop and siding at the community location. This established access to markets for hay and agricultural products of the area. A post office was opened in the community grocery store in 1897.
The community leaders platted "New Town Quapaw," on land to the east purchased from Harry Whitebird. This "new" town was incorporated in 1917 as Quapaw. Discovery of lead andzinc ores in the area extended the Tri-State mining district and resulted in a population boom as thousands of miners moved into the area. With the population and economic boom new businesses moved in and the 1920 census listed 1,394 residents. In the 1920s U. S. Route 66was developed through Quapaw and was paved through Ottawa County by 1933. This event was celebrated with Quapaw Chief Victor Griffin laying a zinc tablet in the center of Main Street.
Quapaw began to lose residents as thelocal mining operations began to decline. The population declined to 1,054 by 1940 and as mining activity in the area declined the population dropped to 850 in 1960.
Quapaw was mentioned in a 1976 episode of the television show, M*A*S*H, a U.S. situation comedy. While Colonel Potter goes to Tokyo on R&R, his horse develops colic. B.J. mentions that his father-in-law Floyd Hayden, a resident of Quapaw, knows all about horses, prompting an urgent phone call for advice.
Quapaw is mentioned in the film Oklahoma, as one of the towns in which the character Jud had worked at some point in the past. Jud also give a fictional account of a deadly arson that occurred there five years prior to the film's setting.