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Author - Emily Cowan

Emily was brought into the Abandoned OK Team in December of 2019. “I’m not gonna lie I fangirled a bit. My first published post I was ecstatic, I felt like I finally had the right audience for my work. The opportunities that came with it made me love the website even more. I remember my first interview with a couple at Waukomis Christian Church. They had bought and restored the 1897 church and insisted on keeping the original sanctuary despite being advised on moving it. We talked with them for at least a good 40 minutes about the church, the abandoned Waukomis Middle School beside it, and the towns other disappearing buildings. They even rang the bell for us that has sat in the bell-tower for the last 120 something years ago. We could tell they were just as passionate about preserving Oklahoma’s dwindling history as we were. When interviewing people and hearing the first-hand stories and recollections of a place and seeing how a person connects to a building, it forms a connection between not only you and that person but yourself and that building.”

City Hospital

By 1920 it was evident Hominy needed a bigger hospital to serve the 2,500 residents in Osage County. Miss Winifred Williamson at one point had started taking flu and pneumonia patients into her house...

Hotel Sparks

Hotel Sparks 1922-1924 In 1922 George W. Sparks had the idea for a grand hotel in Okmulgee. A three-story brick matt-faced building that would be named Hotel Sparks was erected with the help of...

Sparks, OK

Photo Galleries at End of Article Sparks, Oklahoma lays on land that was once part of the Sac and Fox Reservation, which was dissolved in 1890 when the principal chiefs signed an agreement with the...

Gans Jail

Information on the Gans calaboose is slim to none, which can probably mean it wasn’t of much use to the city. A single cell concrete structure with a barrel roof was built probably sometime...

Tee Pee Drive-In

The Tee Pee Drive-In dates back to 1949 when it was built along historic Route 66 by Video Theaters. Tee Pee opened on May 5, 1950, and had a capacity for over 400 cars and was a pride and joy for...

Manchester Jail

In 1920 improvements to the City of Manchester were underway with the addition of a ‘new’ city jail to replace the one that sat just northeast of the current cells. An editor of the Grant...

Covington Jail

In 1909 Covington’s Jail was destroyed by a fire on Christmas Eve. It was set ablaze by a former prisoner who was locked up the previous night. Covington went without a jail for ten years until...

Grayson Jail

Grayson Oklahoma was one of the fifty original All African-American towns located in Oklahoma and one of only thirteen remaining. The town was formerly known as Wildcat and was bustling in the day...

Leedey Jail

Leedey Jail is one to be proud of, bigger than most of the calabooses in its area it is one that can’t be missed. With an almost safe-like door it is fit with a bigger than “normal”...

Butler Jail

Donations for the Butler Jail were starting to be collected by councilman Ben Neu in April of 1930. He himself donated $25 and by the end of one day collected $170. A jail for Butler had been talked...

Kingfisher Jail

Not much is really known about the Kingfisher jail cell, according to the museum in which it sits, “It was moved from downtown to the museum at some point long before the current staff arrived...

Devol Jail

The Devol jail cell was built after 1919 according to a government insurance map, but before or around 1920 when it showed up in local newspapers. On the bigger side of the calaboose scale, this jail...

Miller Theatre

Miller Theatre opened in May of 1947, the perfect start to summer with crowds gathering to see films. It was one of four movie theaters at the time but one of the more popular ones out of the...

Boswell Jail

The Boswell Jail according to the placard above the doorway dates 1906 as when it was built. Although a local NRHP nomination dates it as being completed in 1939. Further evidence of it being built...

Grandfield Jail

The Grandfield Jail was built sometime between 1914-1923 it is a typical barrel roof, concrete structure but unlike most others has two cells. Used mostly as a drunk tank or holding cell it was...

Claremore Boathouse

In April 1938 it was requested by Bert Sprangel, the light and water superintendent of Claremore Lake to have a boathouse built. Plans for an $8,000 rock building were sent to Washington for approval...

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