Wewoka High School Addition – Wewoka

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Address:  Okfuskee and 12th Streets, Wewoka, Oklahoma 040, Seminole County 133 County: Seminole
Started:   Completed:  1939

Current Usage:

Description:

The Wewoka High School Addition is a two-story, L-shaped structure constructed of red brick. On the front it measures some 100 feet from the point it blends into the original structure, while along the side it extends 176 feet. The roof is flat with parapets capped with cut limestone. Entryways are framed by stepped, limestone arches that extend forward from five sided columns on either side that reach above the roof line to form turretts joined by a scrolled cornice, the latter two features both of limestone. Friezes, four vertical insets on windowless walls that reach almost to the roof line, concrete window sills and a water table provide additional decorative detail on the front. On the south auditorium wall three large window openings–including “meeting rails” and “muntins” in the lower one-half–are fashioned from cut limestone. Where the wall rises to accommodate storage of stagesets, four vertical lines of inset limestone rise to the frieze. This same pattern is followed on the rear wall of the auditorium. Replacement of original windows with fixed, metal encased panes on the front and with wood insets on the auditorium has not compromised the architectural integrity of the structure.
Additions to pre-1935 structures are not ordinarily considered as worthy examples of WPA architecture. The Wewoka High School Addition, however, is different. It is especially significant because of its elaborate, decorative detail and its scale. Structures similar to the one at Wewoka are most often associated with the construction program of the Public Works Administration, an agency that employed a contractor and skilled labor rather than destitute and unskilled workers and had sizeable budgets. But that is obviously not the case with this addition, for it is both elaborate and large. Because it varies so widely from the normal WPA structure, it deserves to be a part of this nomination–even though it is merely “an addition.” Incidentally, the addition is larger than the original building, but the architectural style of the latter is so faithfully reproduced in the former that it is virtually impossible to determine where one ends and the other begins. To that extent the Wewoka High School Addition is a remarkable example of how well unskilled WPA labor could be trained to perform complicated tasks. The structure, moreover, certainly contributed to a more rounded and modern educational curriculum at the High School, and its construction materially affected the well being of destitute workers who found employment opportunities when none were to be found in the private sector.

VERBAL BOUNDARY DESCRIPTION: From the intersection of Okfuskee and 12th streets go 235 feet south, 225 feet east, 235 feet north and 225 feet west, all in Block 123, Wewoka original plat.

Sources:

  1. Oklahoma Landmarks Inventory Nomination

Supported Documents:

  1. WPA Properties Seminole County – Wewoka High School Addition

Photos: