INDIAN TERRITORY. A Territory of the 'United States, situated nearly in the middle of the country. It is bounded on the north by Kansa; and Oklahoma, on the east by Missouri and Arkansas, on the south by Texas. and on the west by Oklahoma. Its area is, approximately, 31.000 square miles (census of 19001.
Because the Indian Territory had been re served for Indian tribes. it long remained prac tically unexplored, while the areas around it were surveyed and well mapped. A curious il lustration of the fact that little was known about this large region was afforded by the survey of the lands of the Territory authorized by the National Congress in 1894. It had been assumed that the Territory was mainly an open. flat coun try, and that the survey might therefore proceed very rapidly. It was found. however, that about one-fourth of the Territory is mountainous, and that nearly two-thirds is woodland.' As late as 1895 it appeared that while good map: of the drainage of the Chickasaw reservation had been prepared, its relief was not yet mapped: and that little was known either of the drainage or relief of the remainder of the Territory.
Various parts of the Territory differ much in their topography. South of the Canadian River, in the reservations of the Choctaw and Chieka saw nations, the country is considerably broken. being traversed by the winding serpentine ridges forming the southern part of the Ozark Hills. These hills enter the Territory from Arkansas, and the summits near the Arkansas boundary reach an altitude of 2500 feet above the sea. Farther south they diminish in height till. in the middle of the Choctaw reservation. they are not more than 1000 feet above the general level of the country. The rocks of these ridges are. for the most part. quartzite, while the valleys between them are floored with limestone. This difference in the rock formations explains the topography. The quartzite ridges are the cur s ival of the hardest rocks.
The northeastern part of the country. north of the Arkansas and Canadian rivers. is a plateau deeply scored by streams. West of this very broken region the Territory is broadly undulating.
The eastern portion of the Territory, particularly in the hilly and mountainous regions. is heavily timbered. The southern part, including the Chickasaw reservation and the western portion of the Choctaw country. is territory of tim ber and prairie. the timber predominating to the extent of nearly three-fourths of the area. The largest extent of prairie is in the Cherokee and Creek reservations of the north. where there is little timber except along the streams between the timber belt on the west and the hilly country on the east. Some Azoic rocks are found in the north. and the igneous rocks of the hilly and mountainous areas are above mentioned. but the predominant geological formation is Carbon iferous: in this formation are the bituminous coal measures that will probably always be the chief mineral resource of the Territory. Coal is mined most largely in the southeast and is yield ing nearly 2,000,000 tons a most of the product being marketed in the Southern States. Gold and silver are also found in the mountain regions, and asphalt has been discovered, but is not yet of much importance.
As the drainage of the Territory shows, the general slope of the land is gently from north west to southeast. The streams are numerous, but none of them is important for navigation. The Ned River flows along the boundary of In dian Territory and Texas. The Canadian River, rising in New Mexico, flows east nearly across the Territory till it joins the Arkansas. The Washita fiver, emptying into the Red River, drains most of the southwestern part of the country. The Arkansas, passing through the Ter ritory, and the Red River carry off all the drain age.
The whole Territory belongs to the humid area of the eastern half of the United States, with suf ficient, though not superabundant, rainfall for agriculture. Lying, however, between the 33d and 37th parallels of latitude. the region has a warm climate, the main annual temperature be ing, about 60° F. For FLon.c and FAvNA, see those sections under UNITED STATES.