Does Newalla, Oklahoma Really Exist?
Among my many strange hobbies, I spend a great deal of time studying maps. As a resident of the central Oklahoma area, I have heard people for years tell me they live in Newalla, Oklahoma. For years I have done pretty much what everyone else does and accepted that. They would tell me they lived East of Tinker AFB and South of I-40. As a person that studies maps, I have been spending some time on Google Maps, drawing out the borders of most of the Oklahoma City metro city boundaries. As I started on the East side, I noticed that as much search, I cannot find a good map of the boundaries of Newalla. Over time I started to ask the address of friends that claim to live in Newalla and found that they were actually in the city limits of Oklahoma City.
If you review the Oklahoma City ward map you can see that Oklahoma City limits covers a vast area. Even the Wikipedia article on Newalla has misleading information. Wikipedia refers to Newalla as an unincorporated community in Eastern Oklahoma County located West of US Highway 270 and North of I-40. The are that it is describing is Oklahoma City. I have read that in the 1960’s Oklahoma City annexed hundreds of square miles making it the third largest city in the United States in land area. I am not sure but have a theory that Newalla, though unincorporated was once its own community before Oklahoma City annexed the area in the 1960’s. It is my opinion that the locals hold on to the Newalla identity though they actually live in Oklahoma City.
There seems to be this trend on the East side where people claim to live in Newalla, or Choctaw when they are actually in the city of Oklahoma City. Choctaw’s southern border ends at SE 44th Street though you will find people that live at Choctaw Road and SE 89th that will claim to be in Choctaw. This area is actually Oklahoma City. I have been looking at homes in an area that people call Choctaw at I-40 and Choctaw Road and when I was there I noticed they had garbage dumpsters that said “The City of Oklahoma City” on them. This matches with what the OKC ward map says. I know this may seem to be trivial to most people but I have lived here for 34 of my 44 years and there are people the do not even know what city they live in. If anything, it just surprises me.