February 16, 2018
New Oklahoma National Register Listing
OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma Historical Society, State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) is pleased to announce the newest National Register of Historic Places listing for Oklahoma. The National Register of Historic Places is our nation’s official list of properties significant in our past.
The United States Post Office in Purcell, located at 228 W. Main St., is significant for its association with the Works Progress Administration. When it was built in 1938–39, the post office became another product of the New Deal public works program and it was targeted to receive artwork through the Section of Fine Arts, commonly known as the Section, a Depression-era program that commissioned artists to create artworks for the decoration of public buildings. Frederick E. Conway received the commission for the Purcell post office mural. The mural designed and painted by Conway constitutes an integral part of the building and is a great example of the work available through the Section. The United States Post Office in Purcell is an excellent example of the importance of New Deal-era policies in Oklahoma.
Listing in the National Register is an honorific designation that provides recognition, limited protection and, in some cases, financial incentives for these important properties. The SHPO identifies, evaluates and nominates properties for this special designation.
The State Historic Preservation Office is a division of the Oklahoma Historical Society. The mission of the Oklahoma Historical Society is to collect, preserve and share the history and culture of the state of Oklahoma. Founded in 1893 by members of the Territorial Press Association, the OHS maintains museums, historic sites and affiliates across the state. Through its research archives, exhibits, educational programs and publications the OHS chronicles the rich history of Oklahoma. For more information about the OHS, please visit www.okhistory.org.
Editor’s Note: Photographs to accompany the story can be acquired by contacting the State Historic Preservation Office at 405-522-4484.