Quick Facts

  • The Thomas Gilcrease Institute of American History and Art — Gilcrease Museum — opened in Tulsa on May 3, 1949. Collector and oilman Thomas Gilcrease (1890-1962) created this private museum. The vast collection was deeded to the City of Tulsa in 1955 as a result of a successful bond issue passed in 1954.
  • The museum is situated on 475 acres in the foothills of the Osage Hills in northwest Tulsa, Oklahoma, at 1400 North Gilcrease Museum Road. The grounds include 23 acres of historic theme gardens and the 136-acre Stuart Park.
  • Gilcrease Museum is a short, five-minute drive from downtown Tulsa.
  • The original museum structure was built in the style of an American Indian longhouse. A $12.25 million, three-story expansion and renovation project opened in November 1987, doubling the exhibition space.
  • Approximately six percent of the museum's collection is on view at any one time.
  • Virtually every item in the museum's more than 400,000-piece collection relates to the discovery, expansion, and settlement of North America, with special emphasis on the Western Frontier and American Indian material.
  • In addition to gallery space, museum facilities include an auditorium, The Restaurant at Gilcrease, and the Museum Store, which specializes in American jewelry and pottery, Navajo rugs, books on history and art, and reproductions from the Gilcrease collection.
  • The art collection includes over 10,000 paintings, drawings, prints, and sculptures by 400 artists from colonial times to the present.
  • Important, nonwestern artists featured in the Gilcrease collection include Thomas Eakins, Robert Feke, Charles Willson Peale, Daniel Chester French, John Singleton Copley, James McNeill Whistler, John Singer Sargent, Winslow Homer, John James Audubon, William Merritt Chase, and N.C. Wyeth.
  • Among the Western artists (for whom Gilcrease Museum is renowned) are: Albert Bierstadt, William M. Cary, George Catlin, Woody Crumbo, William R. Leigh Alfred Jacob Miller, Charles M. Russell, Olaf Seltzer, Joseph Henry Sharp, Willard Stone, Thomas Moran, Frederic Remington and Charles Banks Wilson.
  • Gilcrease Museum is home to 18 of the 22 bronzes created by Frederic Remington.
  • The museum's archival collection contains over 100,000 books, manuscripts, documents, and maps ranging from 1494 to the present, including important works such as a letter dictated and signed by Diego Columbus in 1512; The Cortez Decree of 1521; copies of the Declaration of Independence and the Articles of Confederation, signed by Benjamin Franklin; a Thomas Jefferson letter dated July 1, 1776; and the Codex Canadensis, Louis Nicolas, dated between 1675—1680.
  • Gilcrease Museum's anthropology collection includes over 250,000 archaeological and ethnographical objects, historic and contemporary beadwork, ribbon work, and clothing. Southwest textiles and baskets from throughout the U.S. Plains, Arctic, and Northwestern cultures are well represented.
  • Sacred Rain Arrow by master sculptor Allan Houser permanently resides at the museum's entrance. Today approximately 3.2 million cars in Oklahoma bear a license plate bearing the image of the sculpture.