Friday, September 4, 2009

Belleview/Lincoln Elementary School, 1909


1330 East 15th Street

Built in 1909, Bellview School sits at the northwest corner of the Swan Lake Historic District. Until its closing in 1990, this elementary school was the oldest operational school in the city of Tulsa. (photo courtesy of the Beryl Ford Collection/Rotary Club of Tulsa, Tulsa City-County Library and Tulsa Historical Society)


Originally named Bellview, the name was changed to Lincoln in 1914. The original three-story building was built outside the city limits and had no running water or rest room facilities. Perimeter buildings were added between 1916 and 1922. Patio areas originally extended off each classroom. These were later enclosed to make hallways. The bell tower in the original building was taken down in 1967 after being struck by lightning. (Post card from Familyoldphotos.com)



The west side is The Gray Snail Saloon.

Notable graduates of Lincoln Elementary School include Tony Randall (known to his classmates as A. Leonard Rosenberg), Bill "Hopalong Cassidy" Boyd, and Moscelyne Larkin, co-founder of Tulsa Ballet Theater.


The entrance on the south (back) side still has the Lincoln school name.

The old school was converted into a retail/office complex in 1993 and renamed Lincoln Plaza on Cherry Street. A groundbreaking was held on July 9, 1993 by the developers, Orcutt Development Company (named in honor of the area’s founders). Architect Michael Dwyer developed the plans for the new center."


The north side faces Cherry Street and is Jason's Deli.

Today, Lincoln Plaza's shops and restaurants remain a busy and lively focal point of the neighborhood, enjoyed by people from all over the greater Tulsa area. This is also the site of the Cherry Street Farmers' Market on Saturday mornings from April to October. (Excerpted from Tulsa Preservation Commission)

28 comments:

  1. One of the "Ghost Tours" stops at this building. Several haunted stories, notably involving school children from long ago. We didn't see anything when we were there though. Just had a drink and enjoyed the atmosphere!

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  2. I am a 72 year year old retired Doctor.. I grew up in Tulsa and went to Lincoln Grade School
    (1945-1948). I remember it well. I walked to school every morning down 15th street from 15th and Troost. I am proud of my school. I now live in Kansas.
    NB

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  3. I was part of the last 5th grade group to graduate Lincoln Elementary. I remember helping pack boxes and teachers telling me i could have some of the pictures that hung in the hallways for so many years. I won student of the year and won the spelling bee that year. I remember us kids playing on the steps of the Lincoln Annex, (Formerly Bellview). I remember how bizarre it felt to look in the windows and see all the old desks and books still sitting in the rooms. It was like they took out what they wanted and locked the doors forever. Every time i drive by there Lincoln holds a special place in my heart. I was part of history as the last graduates of Lincoln Elementary.

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  4. Going through old boxes and ran across a post-card of "Belleview School, Tulsa, Okla". It is dated Nov 10, 1913. Sent from Nancy Clevenger to Minnie Clevenger, Enid, Okla. Just looked it up on Internet to view history. If the school has special meaning to you, you are welcome to the postcard.

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  5. I attended Lincoln Elementary 1954- 1956. We were city champions in baseball, Lincoln Leopards 1956. Teachers I remember are Mrs. Dupy and Mrs.Story, 4th and 5th grade. I remember the office well, they really tried hard. Played a lot of sand lot soccer on the playground, lots of bruised shins. John Roop

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    1. John , you were 1 yr ahead of me , but we played a lot of 5 and sixth grade soccer together , Sorry bout the shins , hey , we played to the walls , Every game was life or death win . LOL BEST OF TIMES

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    2. Do you know a Tommy grimes that went there about that time? Indian male!!!!

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  6. My grandmother was a cook at the shool and my
    grandfather was the janitor, from about 1928-1948.

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  7. I went to school there from k thru 5th grade 1983 untill 1988 ! Lots of good memories !

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  8. I attended Lincoln from 1955 through 1961 and loved it dearly. Moved from Tulsa in April, 1961 to Harrison, Ar and graduated from Harrison High School in 1967. I still have my class picture of 1960-61 and rembember many of the classmates fondly.

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  9. I attended Lincoln Elementary from 1967 through 1971 when it was referred to as "Stinkin Lincoln" by the Catholic school kids down the block. Memories of swats from a Ms. Williams who taught 6th grade. For a female teacher she could sure light you up. Moved out of state, but was back a few years ago and enjoyed shopping the old school.

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    1. Ha, she never got me but 5th grade teacher Ruth Abraham, did! Caught me with a reading book (loved reading) tucked into my math book during math time. I took 5 swats for my love of reading and still not cured.

      Kendra Woody Machen 1970-74

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  10. I was in the 6th grade in 1984 in Mr Denny's class. I went to 4th 5th and 6th grade at Lincoln. I loved that school. Our principal was Marion Warner and my 4th and 5th grade teacher was Mrs. Abraham. She was very sweet. We would walk to school and cross Peoria and there was a very kind old man that was the crossing guard that helped us every day. There was an arcade across the street and the kids would skip school and hang out over there and sometimes got caught. Our music teacher was Mrs. Dewitt. She wrote the school song when I was attending there.. it went like this. We are honest we are able, we are scout hearted true, we stand behind our colors, gold and royal blue. L I N C O L N is the BEST, we're just a notch above all of the rest. We shoot for the top and QUALITY.. LINCOLN ELEMENTARY.. SING IT AGAIN....LINCOLN ELEMENTARY!

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  11. Attended 'Stinkin Lincoln' (Stinkin' Lincoln had been drinkin', looks like water, tastes like wine, oh my gosh, it's tur-pen-tine!') '74-'79 (?)

    Let's see: Mr. Cagle was the Principal, Ms Zimmerman "I'm gonna box yer ears!" (2nd Grade HR), Ms Boughner/Ms Hale (3rd Grade HR), Ms Nancy Borders (4th Grade HR), Ms Abraham (5th), Mr Denny, Ms Barbara Marshall (PE), Ms Abel (Art & Science), Ms Schultz (Librarian), Ms Witt (Music). Used to hang out under the big tree on the 15th street side and dig tunnels in the sand. From the original school house, there was sidewalk that connected it to the principal's office. During recess, grades 4-6 could play on the north side, grades 1-3 on the south. Used to have popcorn Fridays (10 cents a bag). Played basketball in 6th grade (Mr Burgess of Burgess Hardware was our "coach"). We lost every game except one when the other team forfeited! I think Kenny Monday, the great Olympic wrestler attended Lincoln for a time in the special ed classes. He beat me at the 50-yard dash on sports day. Great times.

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    1. Nancy Borders was probably my all time favorite teacher for my entire life. So kind and such a good teacher! Sounds like we had the same teachers. I was spared, "Zimmerman" but my poor little brother was smacked around by her a few times.

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    2. Ms. Borders was so awesome. I was part of the last graduating class at Lincoln from 88-90 and She was my 4th grade teacher. She was there right till the end. I can never forget how she graded papers with her red pen. 100%- SMILEY FACE- A+ -STAR - Excellent...I also had an awesome science teacher I wont ever forget..Mr. Jones!

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  12. Holy cow! The previous anonymous comment went to school with me! I went from 1st grade to 6th which was 1978 I'm sure. It seems we had a Mr. Abrams for principal at some point. (Abrams, Lincoln, it was close enough to Abraham Lincoln for us kids and he was really tall) I remember Mrs. Zimmerman! Ms. Boughner left mid year (I think I got her fired when I told my mom she had alcohol in the school) and Mrs. Hale came in. Mrs. Borders in 4th. Mr. Denny was my 5th and 6th grade teacher. He had a split class. Mrs. Marshall taught gym. Can't remember too many other names. I was on the basketball team too! Some classmates include Tobi Purcell, Keith who was the fastest kid in class, Jerry Spackman, Jody...

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    1. I was in the same class! I remember Ms Boughner falling asleep at her desk and nearly falling out of her chair when one of the kids snuck up on her and startled her awake. She yelled: "Child you are gonna take my life!" And she always told us that we could try the patients of Job.
      Mrs Berry, Mrs Zimmerman, Mrs Jenkins was music, Mrs Abraham, cannot remember the art teacher's name but she had all those shirts that we put on backwards to protect our clothes.
      Other classmates were Steve Watson, Shannon Murphy

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  13. Uh-oh, my cover is blown. That was the rumor: "Ms. Boughner has booze in her desk." She had already lost control and the inmates were running the asylum. We used to 'go to the bathroom' mid-class and never come back, writing graffiti on the walls and hang out making fart sounds (we were in 3rd grade!). Mrs Hale came in mid-year. Discipline! She used to read us The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (Tales of Narnia) and she tried her best to teach us fractions.

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  14. Hey, anonymous, send me an email at mrpontiac at yahoo do com!

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  15. I attended 2nd grade with Ms.Zimmerman. My memory of her is tainted with her hateful, or at least impatient disposition towards us. I'm 48 now and know how annoying kids can be but because of that experience I've tried to be more patient and gentle towards children as bad memories never wane as much as good memories. She paddled me in front of the class for something I did not do (someone wrote on the bathroom wall and signed it Stacy). One of the greatest memories of my life is that my mother believed me! My mother also battled with Ms. Zimmerman who hurt her feelings by telling my mom, "You dress Stacy like she's going to a party everyday, you should let her dress herself'". I heckled at her front door when she broke her leg and still feel badly for that but hurting my feelings and especially my mom's feelings made me very angry and unable to see anything redeeming in that woman. I'm sure she was just having a rough year and I try to negate my toxic feelings against another human being, especially a teacher. I've pounded into my kids to respect and appreciate their teachers but can spot a sour one a mile away!!

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  16. I attended Lincoln in 1935-36 for the fifth & sixth grades. As I recall my classes were in the perimeter buildings. Those were the years of the worst dust storms. Our teachers were very kind. The Great Depression was still choking the nation. So, we had many children who hadn't proper clothing. A friend came to school barefoot through the snow. He was called out of class to see the principal. When he returned he had on high top shoes (too large). But no stockings. I can't recall any teacher who was mean. People had compassion for each other in those darkest of days. I'll be 90 this week
    and still have strong memories of beautiful Tulsa.

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  17. I am 70 and attended Lincoln in the 2nd and 3rd grades. If I remember, there was an interior open area that was used for recess and playground. If anyone sees this I'd like to know if my memory is still working!! Please let me know. We live about 4 blocks south on Rockford.

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  18. Attended Lincoln from about 1952 to 1957. My teachers were Ms. Wilson, Butler, Sewell, Dupy, Faulkner,and Mr Rainwater. I can't remember the names of others. I do remember the huge, gravel playground where I received lots of scrapes, the special ed. kids who were so sweet, talking with people at the corner of 15th and Peoria (strangers) and watching the funeral procession of Mr Shelly at the church at 15th and Quaker. I lived at 13th and Quincy which now is a part of the BA expressway. Good memories.

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    1. I lived at 12th and Quaker! Walked to school each day years before the expressway came in. Really fond memories of the school.

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    2. I am researching Martin Follett Smith who owned Bellview Grocery store and lived at 1413 S. Quaker. Does anyone know where the store was located or anything about M>F> Smith.

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    3. Did you know an Indian male named Tommy Grimes?

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  19. I believe it was '84 or '85 when I started there I was in the 2nd grade and stayed until I was in the 4th grade we moved and I started at whitier after that....I wish I could remember some of the teachers but I do remember that I had my first boyfriend in the 4th grade and his name was Caleb and I had a good friend there her name was Karen and she was in a wheelchair....I loved attending Lincoln.

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