The Will Rogers Hotel - Claremore, OK
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member hamquilter
N 36° 18.753 W 095° 36.949
15S E 265151 N 4021791
Quick Description: Constructed in 1930, this hotel has been refurbished and is currently in use as a Senior Apartment complex.
Location: Oklahoma, United States
Date Posted: 4/20/2015 10:01:48 AM
Waymark Code: WMNQMZ
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member TheBeanTeam
Views: 1

Long Description:
The lead photo on display at the Claremore Museum of History, shows a depiction of the Will Rogers Hotel as it stood in its original splendor. It was constructed in 1930 and designed by the renowned architects Hawk & Parr in the Mission Spanish Colonial Revival style. The building contained a six-story hotel with 78 rooms plus seven apartments, with the sixth floor containing baths where visitors could obtain one of the area's popular "radium" baths, followed by a shower and massage. At this time, the mineral waters found in Claremore were thought to have curative powers. (In reality, there was no "radium" in the waters.)

This is a multi-level building, with the hotel portion six stories and the east half three and five stories. It is built of red brick, faced with buff brick. The original hotel entrance was on the northwest side, with the entrance to the shops on the south west. It was placed on the NRHP in 1994 and at that time was vacant and being renovated by its new owners, the Rogers County Historical Society. Today, it is occupied by senior apartments. The portion of the buiding once occupied by a five-story Montgomery Ward's department store is currently vacant and for lease. There are shops located on the first floor of the hotel. When the hotel was flourishing, these shops included at various times, a coffee shop, drug store, barber shop and beauty shop.

Today, the elevator shaft on the east side still reads "Will Rogers Hotel / Radium Water Bath Massages". The hotel continued in operation from 1930 to the 1980's, after which it fell into disrepair until purchased and renovated by the Historical Society.

The building has single one-over-one wood-framed windows throughout the hotel portion. Rows of tan-colored standing brick are located between each level of windows. Terra cotta shields and decorative items are placed on the walls at various levels. Three windows on the first floor to the left of the shops entrance have arched terra cotta carved panels. The shops entrance has a heavy wood flat canopy which hangs by chains. Above this entrance, the windows have decorative terra cotta window surrounds. At the roof on the southwest corner, an ornate, symbolic bell tower carries the Mission theme. The original three-story high lighted sign for the hotel is gone. The third-floor windows on the original Montgomery Ward store portion are large and set in triples. Above the entrance to the store is a row of large clerestory, exposed.

The refurbishing of the Will Rogers Hotel was a huge and beautifully-crafted project by the Historical Society and the people of Claremore.
Year photo was taken: c.1930's

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