One of Tulsa's most historic neighborhoods is putting out the welcome mat this weekend. Brady Heights, just north of downtown, has scheduled a tour of eleven homes in the area, including the crown jewel of the neighborhood.
Brady Heights sprang up around the turn of the century, built by Tulsans who were leading the city's growth. After the growth headed south, the neighborhood gradually fell into disrepair. Today, it's in revival sparked by growing interest in the elegance and the price of its old homes. Buyers are also attracted to the area's character. "There's not a single house here that's the same, there's not a single person here who is the same, and that kind of diversity and mix makes life a great experience, particularly for raising children," says Tim Lovell of the Brady Heights Neighborhood Association. The entire neighborhood is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Brady Heights features a variety of architectural styles, with fine wood detail and other special features in many of the homes. The neighborhood's crown jewel, the Brady Mansion, is under renovation but will be open for the Historic Home Tour this weekend. The Greek Revival-style mansion was built in 1905 for one of Tulsa's founding fathers, merchant Tate Brady. When Tulsan Tim Lannon bought the house last winter, it was in a severe state of disrepair. A crew of 30 is working to restore it. Brady Heights residents have volunteered some 3,000 man-hours, stripping wood in the mansion's entrance. Lannon, a professional home renovator, says the Brady Mansion is the finest house he's ever stepped foot in. "It's close to 10,000 square feet. The history behind it is unbelievable, when you consider that Tate Brady was one of the founding fathers of the city. It's a shame that it hasn't gotten any more acclaim that it has, or that someone hasn't taken an interest to restore it to its original condition," he said.
Interest in the house reflects the spirit of Brady Heights, where residents say they're proud to live in "the neighborhood of Tulsa's Founding Fathers." The neighborhood association is hosting a `Renovators' Showcase' at the Brady Mansion on Saturday from 10:00 am to 4:00 am. The Historic Home Tour is Sunday from 1:00 pm to 6:00 pm. Admission is $5.00 per person for both events. There is no charge for children.