Choctaw County was established on December 29, 1847.
Choctaw County is a county of the U.S. state of Alabama. It is named for the Choctaw tribe of American Indians, though most of those that resided here were removed to Oklahoma. As of 2000 the population was 15,922. Its county seat is Butler.
Choctaw County was established on December 29, 1847. The early pioneers of Choctaw came from France, Ireland and Scotland, but mostly from North and South Carolina. The county’s population reached its peak in the 1920s due to the jobs created by such companies as E. E. Jackson Lumber Company in Riderwood and Choctaw Lumber Company in Bolinger. After the sawmills closed, Choctaw began a decline in population that still continues. The county was declared a disaster area in September 1979 due to damage from Hurricane Frederic.
On August 20, 2009, Choctaw County once again made history. A Louisiana man, Jamie Richards, (who was visiting with some of his relatives at the time) was injured during an ATV accident on the Oaktuppa Creek outside of Gilbertown. The location where the accident occurred was so remote that EMTs had to be driven to it on fourwheelers and the victim was airlifted by a state rescue chopper. To date, it is the first and only combination of a land, water, and air rescue mission in the state of Alabama.
As of the census of 2000, there were 15,922 people, 6,363 households, and 4,574 families residing in the county. The population density was 17 people per square mile (7/km²). There were 7,839 housing units at an average density of 9 per square mile (3/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 55.14% White, 44.13% Black or African American, 0.16% Native American, 0.04% Asian, 0.11% from other races, and 0.42% from two or more races. 0.67% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 6,363 households out of which 32.50% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.00% were married couples living together, 16.00% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.10% were non-families. 26.50% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.60% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.48 and the average family size was 2.99.
In the county the population was spread out with 26.10% under the age of 18, 7.90% from 18 to 24, 26.20% from 25 to 44, 25.20% from 45 to 64, and 14.60% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 88.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 85.40 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $24,749, and the median income for a family was $31,870. Males had a median income of $32,316 versus $18,760 for females. The per capita income for the county was $14,635. About 20.70% of families and 24.50% of the population were below the poverty line, including 34.80% of those under age 18 and 26.10% of those age 65 or over.