Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Robert Lawton Jones House

The Oklahoma Interior Design Coalition is holding an open house at one of Tulsa's most famous homes, the Jones House, today from 2 - 7:30pm with a $10 donation at the door. Robert Lawton Jones, who helped found the Tulsa architectural firm of Murray Jones Murray, designed the house as his personal residence in 1959. In addition to the Jones House, Murray Jones Murray designed many of Tulsa's iconic mid-century buildings including the Tulsa International Airport, First Place Tower, Center Plaza Apartments, and the Texaco Office Building.

The house is cited as the first International Style residence built in Oklahoma and includes many hallmarks of modern design. Jones studied under Mies van der Rohe as a graduate student at the Illinois Institute of Technology and later attended the Technical University in Karlsruhe, Germany on a Fullbright Grant after graduate school.

Not only has the house been featured in numerous architectural publications in the U.S. (most notably Arts & Architecture in July 1960) but the house was also featured in a couple European publications as well, Bauen + Wohnen in January 1961 and Schoner Wohnen in September 1963.

Another distinction the Jones House hold is that it was individually listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 2001 when the house was only 42 years old. This is especially significant for a few reasons. First, the house was deemed significant enough to be listed individually and not simply as a contributing structure in a historic district. Secondly, the architect is still living. Thirdly, the house was listed before it was 50 years old, which is generally the accepted age for structures to be considered eligible for listing.

Here are a few pages from the various publications. If you'd like to see some contemporary photos of the house and for more info about the open house, check out the article in today's Tulsa World. Or see it for yourself this evening! The house is located at 1916 E. 47th St.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Lee Anne Zeigler to Speak at Tulsa Press Club

The Executive Director of the Tulsa Foundation for Architecture Lee Anne Zeigler will be the guest for the Page One speaker series June 17 at the Tulsa Press Club. She will discuss TFA's efforts to revitalize downtown.

A non-profit organization started in 1995, TFA seeks to bring vibrancy to downtown Tulsa, advocating for future development and encouraging preservation of the built environment.

In TFA's 15 years, downtown has seen dramatic changes, from the BOK Center, to OneOK Field, to the Brady Arts District. Programs and incentives for building owners, such as historic tax credits, low income housing tax credits, fire suppression grants, and the International Existing Building Code have helped make these projects possible.

Zeigler will discuss the pioneers who took advantage of these incentives and the benefits Tulsans experience due to TFA's vision.

Zeigler has a Bachelor of Science degree in Biological Sciences and a Master of Science in Landscape Architecture and Horticulture. Her experience includes landscape and architectural design, urban planning, and providing support to the historic preservation community as a former Mayoral appointee, and as staff to the Tulsa Preservation Commission. In addition, Zeigler has completed extensive training in archival methods and practices administered by the Oklahoma Department of Libraries as part of a grant that qualified the TFA Archives as a "Model Archival Organization," recognized by the National Historic Records Advisory Board. She has also completed all four of the National Trust for Historic Preservation's Preservation Leadership Training programs.

Page One Luncheons are open to the public. Cost is $15 for Press Club members and $20 for non-members. Lunch service starts at 11:15 a.m. and the presentation begins at noon. A question and answer session will follow. RSVP today to

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

NTHP Launches @home

Last week, the National Trust for Historic Preservation launched @home, an online community for people who love their homes. @home will provide people with an opportunity to share ideas, resources, pictures, home improvement tips, and more with others from across the country. Currently, only four people from the entire state of Oklahoma have joined. So, if you love your home and would like to share its history with like-minded individuals, join @home!