— Tulsa's Historic Route 66 —
The Cathedral Square area, south of the central business
district, contains several grand churches with their
accompanying educational and support facilities.
The churches, constructed between 1912 and 1929, are
high-style examples of ecclesiastical architecture with all
of the requisite ornamental detail and stylistic features.
Their formal styles include Greek Revival, Classical Revival,
Gothic Revival, and Art Deco. Each is part of a larger
multi-building complex that often occupies an entire city
block. The churches include secondary buildings such as
schools, rectories, and chapels, all built between the 1920s
and the first decade of the 20th century.
The First Methodist Church and its Sunday School building
are the newest of these. Construction started in 1926 around
the time that Route 66 was established. The project hired
workers from Philadelphia with specialized masonry skills
to help with construction. To help defray costs, these men
bunked at the church and ate meals prepared by the church's
Ladies Society. According to popular lore, as times got tough
at the end of the decade, the Ladies Society began noticing
car loads of travelers heading west on Route 66 in search of
new opportunities and often in need. The First Methodist
Ladies Society extended their good works, providing needy
with lodging, food, and clothes before they
continued their journey west on Route 66.
Holy Family Catholic Church
122 W. 8th Street
The Gothic Revival church was constructed in 1912. The parish constructed the Holy Family Rectory and the Holy Family Catholic School in 1919 and 1920, respectively. The Gothic Revival style of these buildings complements the church and creates a unified complex. The Holy Family Catholic Church complex was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1982.
First Church of Christ Scientist
906 S. Boulder Avenue
The First Church of Christ Scientist is a unique limestone building. Constructed in 1923, the Greek Revival church has a large central dome that is its defining characteristic.
First Christian Church
913 S. Boulder Avenue
The First Christian Church was constructed in 1919. This Classical Revival building also has a unique dome clad in green tiles. Two additional buildings, constructed in 1940 and 1960, complete the complex. These buildings exhibit the influence of the Modern Movement on ecclesiastical design, specifically the hexagonal chapel with its concrete cladding and tall, narrow stained glass window.
First Methodist Church
1115 S. Boulder Ave.
The First Methodist Church and the adjacent
Sunday School Building, constructed concurrently in 1926-1928, exhibit the Gothic Revival style, with tall lancet windows, pointed arched doors, and a pair of ornate spires.
First Presbyterian Church
709 S. Boston Avenue
In 1911, First Presbyterian Church moved to the southeast corner of 7th Street and Boston Avenue where they erected a brick building at a cost of $100,000. Up to 500 worshipers were being turned away on Sundays when the 7th Street and Boston Avenue building was full, so construction began in 1924 and was completed in 1926 for a sixteenth century Gothic structure that houses the current sanctuary.