OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Two Oklahoma properties are now part of the National Register of Historic Places.
The National Register of Historic Places is the official list of U.S. sites deemed worthy of preservation.
According to the Oklahoma Historical Society and State Historic Preservation Office, St. Ann’s Home for the Aged in Oklahoma City and Alva Municipal Swimming Pool and Bathhouse in Alva have both been officially added to the historic list.
St. Ann’s Home for the Aged was constructed in 1950 by Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City-Tulsa to provide senior housing within Oklahoma City.
“The property is significant for its association with the social history of Oklahoma City, as no formal housing for senior citizens existed at the time of St. Ann’s construction. Although a charity of the Catholic diocese, St. Ann’s Home welcomed seniors of all ages and faiths, who had few other options for decent housing.”Matthew Pearce, Ph.D., State Historic Preservation Office, Oklahoma Historical Society
St. Ann’s became a licensed nursing facility with the state in 1980 when Oklahoma enacted its first nursing home laws. State regulations required major interior alterations for the building to remain a licensed facility. Rather than update the building, the diocese opted to build a new nursing home and assisted living center.
St. Ann’s Home closed in January 1991 when its last residents moved to the new facility.
Once known as the “Little Ocean,” the Alva Municipal Swimming Pool and Bathhouse was completed by the New Deal’s Works Projects Administration in 1940.
“The one-story bathhouse is notable for its poured concrete construction and Art Moderne features that include fluted pilasters with beveled corners, horizontal fenestration, and low relief ornamentation around the main entrance. Together, the swimming pool and bathhouse are exemplary examples of the WPA’s efforts to utilize modern architectural designs in their construction of municipal structures for local communities in northwest Oklahoma.”Matthew Pearce, Ph.D., State Historic Preservation Office, Oklahoma Historical Society
The swimming pool is 200 feet long with a capacity of over 500,000 gallons of water. A smaller, circular-shaped wading pool and concrete gazebo are also on the property.
Listing in the National Register of Historic Places provides recognition, limited protection and, in some cases, financial incentives for sites who receive the honorific.