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The city of Wichita Falls is the seat of Wichita County in Texas. Once inhabited by the Choctaw Indians after they were forced from their original home in Mississippi, it was bought up by John A. Scott in 1837, though he apparently put the land certificates away and apparently simply forgot about them. His progeny found the certificates after he died and had the townsite platted in 1876. The site was envisioned as a steamboat shipping center. At the time of its platting, there were already settlers living there, including a Tom Buntin and his family, who had settled there in the 1860s and made and sold buffalo hides. In 1875, the first store was built and run by John Converse, and the man who platted the town, M. W. Seeley, built a house on what is now the corner of Ohio and Sixth Streets. The Barwise family from Dallas moved in after visiting the area in 1878, and the next year, the post office was established. By 1881, there were thirteen families living there, and shortly thereafter, the Fort Worth and Denver Railway came through town, starting a boom in property sales. The town became a transportation hub and supply center with the arrival of the Wichita Valley Railroad, the Wichita Falls and Southern Railway, the Wichita Falls and Northwestern Railroad, and soon, several others. In 1911, oil was discovered, changing the economic base drastically with the production of more than 45% of all Texas oil. Wichita Falls was destroyed in 1979 by one of the biggest tornado in recorded history. more than 20% of the homes and even more businesses were flattened, and while 3,200 people were injured, only 45 people were killed.

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