Sunday, January 1, 2017

Courthouse - Sayre, Oklahoma

Built in 1911, the Beckham County Courthouse along Route 66 in Sayre, Oklahoma is one of the few courthouses in the state that is topped by a large dome. The tallest building in Sayre, the courthouse has been the center of civic and legal activity for over 100 years and remains a landmark in the town of 4,000 people.

For many years, Sayre fed and fueled the steady stream of people exploring the country in automobiles on the east-west Mother Road. In the 1930s and 1940s, the town built and maintained a public library, a hospital, a forty-acre city park, a golf course, swimming pool, baseball and softball fields, a racetrack, and rodeo grounds, mostly due to the business income from Route 66 travelers.

The distinctive design of the courthouse was the reason it was featured in the final cut of John Ford’s movie, The Grapes of Wrath. Most people think it is the capitol in OKC that is in the movie, but this is it.

A distinctive feature on the grounds is a sharply-dressed bison standing in front of the courthouse. The statue was created by the artist Bill Cothran and is titled "Spirit of the West." It was added to the courthouse grounds in 2007.

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