NAME: Hochatown
COUNTY: McCurtain
CLIMATE: Moderate winters/Hot & Humid summers
COMMENTS: The original town is under Broken Bow resevoir.
REMAINS: Some house foundations still exist but they're underwater.
Over a span of more than 60 years, Hochatown grew from a brawling lumber camp to become the "Moonshine Capital of Oklahoma" and later a quiet farming and ranching community before disappearing forever beneath the waters of Broken Bow Lake.When the Choctaw Indians first came to Oklahoma, about twelve families followed the trail northward from the old Eagle to the valley in which Hochatown was later located. These early inhabitants planted a few crops and spent a great deal of time hunting and trapping. About 1900 the Choctaw Lumber and Coal Company (later Dierks) established a lumber camp where the village developed. To get the logs out they built a spur railroad into the area from Eagletown. The lumber camp had a commissary that sold largely personal items plus whiskey on Saturdays only, a cook shack, and a bunkhouse. After the prime timber had been cut, the tracks were removed and the lumberjacks shifted to new camps, but the old buildings remained standing.Toward the end of the operation by the Choctaw Lumber and Coal company a small private sawmill and a stave mill were started. Farmers moved into the area, making use of the partly cleared land by planting cotton, corn sorghums, hay, and truck crops. As a result of the, population increase, a general store and a school were started, and a post office was established. No state highways were ever extended through the area, and no bus line ever served the village. During the 1920's and 1930's, the area became noted for its "moonshine whiskey." Green writes, "Since the clear waters of Mountain Fork River were ideal for distilling mountain dew, and because the creek canyons furnished concealment from federal revenuers, Hochatown became the center for a thriving illegal whiskey operation." During a trial in federal court in Muskogee, one federal agent referred to the village as the "moonshine capital of Oklahoma."Before the Broken Bow Dam was ever considered, people were leaving the Hochatown community. Because of the lack of economic and social opportunities, very few of the younger people remained, and many of the older people moved to nearby towns where medical and transportation facilities were available. With the building of the dam, the cemetery and church were moved and most other structures were either moved or destroyed.The last family left the village in 1966. Hochatown is now covered by forty feet of water. Submitted by: Mitch Kelly