Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Touring Another Historical Home

Monday evening the Frank Phillips Home in Bartlesville, OK was open for a special Christmas tour.

It's been several years since I toured the home of Phillips Petroleum Company's founder.

In 1973 the Phillips' granddaughter deeded the home and it's contents to the Oklahoma Historical Society and this year marked the home's centennial.

Knowing that photos inside are not permitted I drove by earlier in the afternoon and took a few photos in the daylight.

The Christmas lighting was simple and lovely after dark.

While this is the front door of the home
back in the day, chauffeurs would pull around on the north side and guests would enter into the music room through the north portico door. There they would be entertained until dinner was served.

This is a better view of that door in the daylight

and in the evening. Can't you just imagine arriving at the home for a Christmas party? How festive!

One of the tour guides noted that Jane Gibson Phillips was a very social person. She and Frank entertained almost nightly.

This is a view of the house looking toward the northwest.

The home underwent two major renovations over the years, the first being in 1917 when the southwest wing was added. The second renovation occurred in 1930.

After the second renovation, Mrs Phillips hired a local photographer to come to the home and photograph each of the rooms. Because of those photos and the fact that the OHS was not only deeded the home but also all of its contents, the rooms are still decorated as it was in 1930.

Frank and Jane were married on February 18, 1897. In the years to come they became the parents of one son and two foster daughters.

The daughters' bedroom is a favorite of mine. Among other items in the lovely room are 3 huge stuffed animal toys - a tiger, a collie and an owl. I remembered from other visits that the tiger used to growl. The guide last night said it also used to walk but can no longer do either. How pampered those girls must have been.

During the tour Christmas music filled the home and was provided by a pianist playing the 1910 Weber baby grand piano in the music room.

Father Christmas was also in attendance, wandering through the house and visiting with guests. I summoned all my courage and asked if it would be possible for just a photo with the jolly man, noting that I knew photos in the home weren't permitted. One of the volunteers was very obliging and snapped a quick picture for me. Isn't Father Christmas just grand?

What a wonderful Christmas event in my hometown.

As always, if you're ever in northeast Oklahoma, there are a number of interesting places to visit in and around Bartlesville - the Phillips' home, Woolaroc, the recently opened Phillips 66 museum, the Price Tower and Keepsake Candles to name a few.


  1. We've been there -- over 20 years ago!!!! It was AMAZING. One of the most interesting homes we've toured. It lets you see what $$$$$$$$ could buy a person (now) 100 years ago. To have a pianist there must have been fun. Merry Christmas!

  2. I'm going to have to tell my mother about this wonderful home. She'd love it.

    Love your historical tours! I learn something new about your state and its history each time. I have family there in Oklahoma--but they don't share historical tours!

    That's Father Christmas! Thank you!

  3. Now that's a nice home! And so pretty with the lights. You and Father Christmas look as happy as can be.


    I love doing a mansion tour! I will have to go to Phillips sometime. I love Wooloroc..I included a link to a mansion tour in the Poconos in Pennsylvania. My grandmother and her sister and I went there one summer day. We still talk about it because we just had so much fun...

  5. What a wonderful tour. Thanks for sharing another great destination! Merry Christmas!!

  6. You had me at historical.

    Thank you for sharing. I do so enjoy your tours.

  7. I love historical homes. I have not been to the Phillips Mansion, but I think I'll plan to get up there sometime soon. It looks wonderful.

  8. Thank you for telling your readers about the Frank Phillips Home! We will look forward to seeing you at the mansion again soon!

    Your friends at the Frank Phillips Home