Tulsa School Learns Through Walking Tour Of Race Massacre Sites

Saturday, February 15th 2020, 6:00 pm
By: Kristen Weaver

As a new generation learns from downtown Tulsa’s darkest days, a long-hidden part of the city’s history is being brought to light again.

More than 150 took part in a walking tour of some significant sites of the 1921 Race Massacre on Saturday.

Sara Skinner is a twelfth grader at the Tulsa School of Arts and Sciences.

"It was only supposed to be our class of 10 kids,” Skinner said. “It's mind-boggling."

In her class about the Tulsa Race massacre, Skinner asked if they could walk through the city's historic spots and invite the public to join.

"Today was great,” Tulsa School of Arts and Sciences Middle Grades Principal Dan Hahn said. “Hopefully it gives people a visual moving forward. It's so powerful to drive by a place and knowing what happened there."

Hahn guided the group all over downtown.

The free walking tour stopped at places like the Greenwood District, where Black Wall Street thrived in the early 1900s; the Drexel Building at 3rd and Main, where the race massacre was sparked in an elevator and through the Deco District.

“It's really inspiring, because a lot of people don't know about Black Wall Street,” attendee Levonte Douglas said. “We’re given a source of information to see where we came from.”

Tulsans looked at plaques, naming businesses destroyed in the blaze.

The art and memorials stand to keep the massacre at the forefront of Tulsa's history.

Students who helped organize the tour said it's really made them reflect on the community.

"I hope people take an interest,” Skinner said. “There's so much people can dive in to."

 "People in Tulsa can walk or drive 10 minutes and see all that, and I think that's powerful,” Hahn said.