Pop-Up Museum In Downtown Showcases Tulsa's History As Oil Capital Of The World

A new exhibit is open at the Philcade Building taking you back in time to Tulsa's booming oil industry.

Thursday, May 11th 2023, 5:25 pm

By: News On 6, blank blank


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A new exhibit is open at the Philcade Building taking you back in time to Tulsa's booming oil industry.

The first Tulsa Oil Show started in 1923, and the Oil Capital Pop-Up Museum coincides with the 100th anniversary of a legendary piece in Tulsa's history. Jeffrey Tanenhaus is the founder of Tulsa Tours. The office is located in the Philcade Building.

He often talks about Tulsa's history as the Oil Capital of the World on his tours, but he wanted to show it instead.

"The reason I did it is there's nothing quite like this in Tulsa. This is a city that was founded on oil. We should be proud of our industrial heritage,” Tanenhaus said.

Starting in 1923, the International Petroleum Exposition was held irregularly in Tulsa for decades until 1979. Tanenhaus says it's where the latest oil industry equipment and technology would be on display. You can read the research, and check out graphics like advertising and marketing for the oil expos, along with postcards, maps, and artifacts.

He says the Philcade Building is significant since it was built by a man in the oil industry, Waite Phillips.

"Visitors come through here anyway to look at the architecture - and now they'll be able to understand the context of why all these great downtown buildings were built because of oil money,” Tanenhaus said.

Tanenhaus says expects the exhibit to run for months and potentially longer.

The free launch event is Wednesday at 5 p.m.

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