Passionate Origins

I drove to Tulsa, my hometown, on Saturday.  I have fewer and fewer reasons to go, reunions and funerals mostly, but I had a couple of things to take care of so I made the four-hour drive there and back in a day.

“Why don’t you spend the night?  See some people?” encouraged Bill, assuring me that all would be well here.

“I don’t really have people there anymore.”

I drove through my old neighborhood, by the park where I did “Walk for Mankind” and by the house of the boy who gave me my first kiss.  (The last was coincidental, but the house was pretty terrific, which I did not appreciate at the time.)

And I went to Philbrook, which is one of Tulsa’s museums.  It was the old Phillip’s estate and I spent some time there in junior high and high school.   I didn’t take refuge there nearly as often as I do at the Nelson, but its cool, hushed halls and high ceilings sheltered me on several occasions.  I hadn’t realized it before, but the house, on twenty-three acres and with seventy-two rooms, was probably the first grand house that I ever saw and I wondered if it infected my spirit for good.

Villa Philbrook was designed by Kansas City architect Edward Beuhler Delk; the gardens were designed by the Kansas City firm Hare & Hare.  Funny, huh?  You can find a little more on the house itself here.

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11 thoughts on “Passionate Origins

  1. A wonderful museum from what you have shown us Patricia. I will take a further look.

    xoxo
    Karena
    Art by Karena

  2. What a wonderful house i Tulsa!

    Seeing that at a young age is life-altering! (if one is visual!)

    Thank you for the "head's up"!! I will have to go to Tulsa to see it!

  3. I have never seen a lantern as beautiful as that illuminated globe, never. Seeing it glowing down the hallway, exquisite. I squint and imagine that one of the elements was absent, the longitude or latitude, the armillary, the ring of astrological signs, even the little finial at the bottom, the artist must have weighed similar decisions and proportions, it's so perfectly perfect in every way. Breathtaking, thank you for the spirit lift.

    -Flo

  4. Thanks for these lovely images. Tulsa was the nearest city to us when I was a kid, so I have happy memories of visiting the Philbrook, ice skating at the Williams Center, shopping at Utica Square and just driving by the wackadoo architecture of ORU. Heady stuff, all, for a small-town girl!

  5. My wedding portrait was done at Philbrook 25 years ago. Living in London now and still loving beautiful gardens. Sweet memories of a lovely place.

  6. Love this post!! I'm a New Yorker now, but I grew up near Kansas City and went to school in Tulsa. Midwestern architecture is so uniquely beautiful and rich. I used to love strolling the grounds of the Philbrook as well as Woodward Park. I need a trip back to both cities to really appreciate the beauty that may have been overlooked through my younger eyes. Thanks for the reminder and inspiration!

  7. Oh my I must have that Globe Ceiling light!Can you give me information on where to find it.
    Thank you in advance Mrs Blandings!

    1. Susan – I’m so sorry, but I believe that light is vintage. It is in a museum that was a private home in Tulsa that was built in the ’20s.

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