Districts in the National Register of Historic Places
Swan Lake Historic District
Representative Sample of Properties
1. FIRST PARADE OF HOMES HOUSE (1304 East 19th Street) 1928
This Tudor Revival cottage was built under a canvas tent. The tent was removed in a much-publicized ceremony marking the beginning of the annual Parade of Homes in Tulsa.
2. SPILLERS MANSION (1505 East 19th Street) 1924
The mansion was built by prominent attorney G. C. Spillers on part of three acres he purchased in 1922 for $12,000. The house is considered to be an adaptation of Georgian Style, which originated in England and was a popular style for mansions across the Southern states. The mansion contains seven fireplaces, a commercial-size incinerator, several staircases, a third floor ballroom, and a basement club room with a terrazzo floor. The first floor is highlighted by beveled glass doors, solid brass hardware and 10-foot ceilings. The mansion is constructed of steel I-beams encased in brick and mortar. The roof is gray slate with copper nails.
Mrs. Lorena Martin Spillers was a prominent civic leader in Tulsa. She was one of the organizers of the Tulsa Garden Club, and served as its President from 1933 until 1935. The Rose Garden in Woodward Park was established while she was president of the club.
3. THE NATATORIUM (1565 South Swan Drive) 1926
This Monterrey/Spanish Eclectic home with red tile roof was built on the site of the original covered swimming pool (or natatorium) at Orcutt Lake Park. The basement of the house was the original swimming pool.
4. KOBERLING HOUSE (1543 South Swan Drive) 1944
The residence was the home of architect Joseph Koberling (1900-1990). The home, designed and built by him, carries out the lake’s theme by featuring a terra cotta swan bas relief on the front of the building. It was the first home in the area to incorporate this motif, which has now become a neighborhood tradition.
Koberling, known for his striking Art Deco designs, is perhaps best known for his design for the Will Rogers High School, which was a collaboration with Leon B. Senter. The high school, built in 1938 with Public Works Administration funds, was hailed in many publications as a model of a modern school. Many of the intricate details of the building are attributed to Koberling, including the bas reliefs of Will Rogers over the doorways. Some of the other designs by Koberling include: the John B. McGay House (1936) in the Gillette neighborhood; the Chamber of Commerce Building (1951); the City Veterinary Hospital (1942); and the fire stations at 6th Street and Lewis Avenue and 36th Street and Lewis Avenue.
5. SPILLERS LAKE SITE (1850 South Swan Drive) 1921
In 1921, a second lake was created next to Swan Lake Park. In 1939, a young boy drowned in the lake. In consideration to the boy’s family, the lake was filled in and donated to the city. This property is across St. Louis Avenue on the west end of Swan Lake Park.
6. MARQUETTE SCHOOL & CHRIST THE KING CHURCH (1519 South Quincy Avenue) 1927
A combination of Gothic, Byzantine and Art Deco styles, the church was designed in 1927 by Chicago modernist Francis Barry Byrne, a contemporary of Frank Lloyd Wright. In the 1920s, Christ the King was considered innovative and, to some, radical. This was the first church in the world to be dedicated with the name “Christ the King.” The stained glass windows, designed by Alfonso Iannelli, are described in Liturgical Arts Magazine as ranking “among the best to be found in the United States.” Marquette School, a later addition that complements the design of the church, was built in 1932, and was designed by architect Frederick W. Redlich.
7. BELLVIEW (later LINCOLN) SCHOOL (SE Corner of Peoria & 15th Street) 1909
Until its closing in 1990, this elementary school was the oldest operational school in the city of Tulsa. Originally named Bellview, the name was changed to Lincoln in 1914. The original three-story building was built outside the city limits and had no running water or rest room facilities. Perimeter buildings were added between 1916 and 1922. Patio areas originally extended off each classroom. These were later enclosed to make hallways. The bell tower in the original building was taken down in 1967 after being struck by lightning. Notable graduates of Lincoln Elementary School include Tony Randall (known to his classmates as A. Leonard Rosenberg), Bill “Hopalong Cassidy” Boyd, and Moscelyne Larkin, co-founder of Tulsa Ballet Theater. The old school was converted into a retail/office complex in 1993 and renamed Lincoln Plaza on Cherry Street. A groundbreaking was held on July 9, 1993 by the developers, Orcutt Development Company (named in honor of the area’s founders). Architect Michael Dwyer developed the plans for the new center.
8. ORCUTT APARTMENTS (1320 East 17th Street and 1320 East 16th Street) 1918
These apartments were built for Samuel Augustus Orcutt in 1918. His family resided in these apartments for a few years while they managed the rental units. This was the first apartment building to be built for Orcutt, and the first apartments in the area. Most of the red brick apartments near Quaker Avenue and 16th Street were owned by Orcutt, including the Lincoln Apartments, which were renamed by a later owner. Because of Orcutt’s apartment development enterprise, there are more apartment buildings built between 1920 and the late 1930s in the Swan Lake neighborhood than in any other area of Tulsa.
9. FLETCHER HALL SITE (1602 South Rockford Avenue) early 1930s
Originally built as the Temple Israel, this building served the Jewish community for over twenty years. In 1955, it was bought and remodeled by Christ the King Catholic Church for use as a fellowship hall. It was renamed Fletcher Hall in 1975 in honor of Monsignor Daniel C. Fletcher, former pastor of the parish. Fletcher Hall was removed in 1991 and replaced with the present playground area for Marquette School students.
10. HICKERSON HOUSE (1530 South Trenton Avenue) 1910
Perhaps the oldest surviving house in the area, this home originally featured gas lights, as did many other houses in the area. The style of the house, National Folk, was widespread across the United States from the 1850s through the first half of the twentieth century. W. H. Hickerson, an early-day blacksmith in Pawhuska, built the house for his son, C.C. Hickerson, who was a long-time plumbing contractor in Tulsa.
11. FIRST HOUSE ON SWAN LAKE (1583 South Swan Drive) 1919
This Italian Renaissance house (originally numbered 1571) was designed by architect Noble B. Fleming of Kansas City, who also designed the Tulsa Garden Center building located on the south edge of Woodward Park. This house was built for the J. M. Hayner family. Hayner was president of Monarch royalty Company when he moved into this house.
12. BRENNAN HOUSE (1568 South Swan Drive) 1929
This Dutch Colonial home was built for E. J. Brennan, who originally platted the Swan Park Addition and renamed the lake “Swan Lake.” He donated the lake to the city in 1917 as a public park.