Tulsa, Oklahoma: The Cave House

Built in 1920 as a restaurant and speakeasy, with secret escape tunnels. Now a private home, but tours are offered. Call ahead!
Address:
1623 W. Charles Page Blvd., Tulsa, OK
Directions:
From downtown, go west on 3rd St. It will turn into Charles Page Blvd. You will see a long, rock wall on the right side just before you arrive.
Hours:
Closed winter - opens March 1 Sa-Su. 12 - 5 pm. (Call to verify)
Phone:
918-378-1952
Admission:
Adults $7.50, Kids 5-15 $5, under 5 $2.50, babies free.
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The Cave House.

The Cave House

The "Cave" was built in the 1920s by Joseph Koberling Sr. and James Purzer. Legend has it that the restaurant provided outdoor eating in the daytime, and became a "speakeasy" at night. Folks say Pretty Boy Floyd was just one of the outlaws with Oklahoma connections that was known to visit. At one time the bldg. contained an entrance to the "main room" where the action took place. Residents who live on the top of the hill tell of many tunnels that also served as entrances and/or exits from "The Cave."

Interior view of a cave room.

At this time the room and tunnels are sealed off by concrete walls -- though nobody knows why. Not only was this the perfect set-up during Prohibition, but for "bootlegging" into the 1960s.

A paranormal team in Tulsa conducted an investigation and after their conclusions included "The Cave" on its "Haunted Landmark Tour."

While working on this landmark I have owned for 10 years, I was constantly interrupted with people who just wanted to see inside, so I now offer "I've Always Wanted to See inside" tours. At this time over 900 people have visited, much because of local media coverage. Not only is the architectural style interesting, but it has a history of very interesting occupants -- and people really enjoy the ways recycling is playing a role with its decor and upkeep.

[Linda Collier, 01/12/2008]

There are plans to have the hidden room excavated, which may connect to secret tunnels behind and under the house. A local legend claims the tunnels hide the remains of Klan victims, and adjacent Newblock Park has been rumored as the secret mass grave of hundreds who died in the 1921 Tulsa Race Riots!

Nearby Offbeat Places

East Meets West: Symbolic Route 66 MidpointEast Meets West: Symbolic Route 66 Midpoint, Tulsa, OK - < 1 mi.
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In the region:
World's Only Main Street Oil Well, Barnsdall, OK - 30 mi.

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