ONE SQUARE MILE: TEXAS
About The Series
Airing on over 150 Public Television stations in 39 states, One Square Mile (OSM) is a documentary television series that portrays American culture from the perspective of distinct square miles across the US. Originating in Texas, the series has grown to include every corner of America, with a special focus on the Lone Star State. As a whole, the series is a microcosm of American life and a collective portrait of what it means to be American. The series represents the many faces and facets of America from the perspective of the individual while spanning the emotional, demographic and physical landscapes. This is a series about shared challenges and aspirations. The square miles include urban, suburban and rural communities and neighborhoods from every corner of the America.
The nine square miles featured in season one were selected from suggestions submitted by PBS viewers and visitors to this website. If you know of a great square mile that should be in a future season, tell us about it.
Season One Trailer
ONE SQUARE MILE: EL PASO, TEXAS
Barrow, Alaska is the northernmost town in North America. It sits at the edge of the Arctic Ocean and is reachable only by aircraft unless you are willing and able to drive the 500 mile ice road in the frozen winter months, or navigate by ship in the summer months. The community is resilient and thrives in the harsh climate and remoteness of the far Northern Slope.
The climate is so severe that sewage must be heated to avoid freezing the pipes, and ice cream can be stored outside almost year-round.
ONE SQUARE MILE: NACOGDOCHES, TEXAS
The Fort Worth neighborhood of Lake Como is an island. Located in the predominantly affluent west side of Fort Worth, this community has been home to generations of African Americans. Many of the early residents moved here to work in the surrounding neighborhoods as domestic laborers.
In the generations that followed, Lake Como went through many changes, including desegregation, and gentrification.
ONE SQUARE MILE: SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS
The town of Smith Center, Kansas is a microcosm of small town life in America. Located at the center of the contiguous United States, Smith Center offers a glimpse into life in rural communities throughout the mid-west and beyond.
The town itself is almost an exact square mile, and is home to approximately 1,663 residents. Like much of the rural mid-west, the town has a dwindling population.
ONE SQUARE MILE: NEW YORK, NY
There are 23 square miles in Manhattan. Each one tells a different story.
This square mile in lower Manhattan is home to over 66,880 residents. This square mile is a melting pot of cultural and economic diversity; within its borders are sections of: the Lower East Side, Bowery, Chinatown, Five Points, Nolita, Little Italy, SoHo, TriBeCa, Two Bridges, Civic Center and the Financial District.
ONE SQUARE MILE: KENNARD, TX
This square mile is located in Kennard, Texas in the middle of the Davy Crocket National Forest in deep East Texas. It is home to 275 people.
Largely dependent on the surrounding timber, Kennard is home to loggers, haulers, and small sawmills. The town’s largest employer is the school. Kennard has a diner, a donut shop, two gas stations, a bank, and a post office. The closest full size grocery store is 16 miles away in nearby Crockett, Texas.
ONE SQUARE MILE: HANALEI, HI
This square mile is located on the north shore of Kauai in the Hawaiian Islands. The square mile includes the inner-most portion of Hanalei Bay and the small town of Hanalei.
Hanalei is a crossroads for the northern part of the island. It is a square mile destination for locals as well as tourist. The north shore of Kauai is known as one of the best beaches in the world.
ONE SQUARE MILE: NEW ORLEANS, LA
This square mile is located the heart of the Crescent City. The square mile includes the neighborhoods of the Garden District and the Irish Channel. The inhabitants of this square mile are a varied mix of life-long residents, as well as post-Katrina transplants who have made New Orleans their new home.
ONE SQUARE MILE: WILTON MANORS, FL
This square mile is located in the City of Wilton Manors in Broward County, Florida. The city has approximately 12,000 residents. It ranks 1st in the US for its percentage of gay residents as a proportion of the total population.
Wilton Manors has an openly gay mayor and a majority gay city council. The area is a microcosm of progressive America.
ONE SQUARE MILE: AUSTIN, TX
There are 271 square miles in Austin, Texas. Each one tells a different story. This square mile encompasses the northwestern edge of south central Austin and includes a portion of the Colorado River known as Lady Bird Lake and the Bouldin Creek and Zilker neighborhoods.