- Norman, OK
- Site Type:
- Parks and Recreation, Amphitheaters and Bandshells, Picnic and Other Facilities, Bathhouses
- New Deal Agencies:
- Work Relief Programs, Works Progress Administration (WPA), National Youth Administration (NYA), Federal Emergency Relief Administration (FERA)
Formerly known as Norman City Park, this site was established in the late 1890s and considerably improved during the New Deal:
“Between 1935 and 1937, under the New Deal programs, several items were constructed in the southwest portion of the park. Work was performed by the Federal Emergency Relief Administration, the Works Progress Administration with some work done by the National Youth Administration.
A beautiful native stone amphitheater was constructed which is still in use today. The amphitheater is a semi-circle, with three sections of twenty rows of seating. The seats are native stone benches with concrete caps. At the rear of the seating (west) a parking lot has native stone curbing, with a low wall behind the seating. From the parking area to the stage, four stone walks serve as aisles for the seating. Low stone walls border the amphitheater, with three stone steps leading to the stage.
Southeast of the amphitheater are two native stone bathhouses. They originally served as dressing rooms and showers for a wading pool, but have not been used as such since about 1984. Currently, the west bathhouse has had the windows, doors and roof removed and serves as a walled picnic area. The east bathhouse houses the parks filtration system.
Running along the south side of the park is a drainage ditch which has a concrete bottom, with stone lined walls. This was constructed by the WPA, with some of the rip-rapping done by the NYA. Two stone bridges over this ditch were also built at this time.
The park was originally named the Norman City Park, but was re-named J.A. “Abe” Andrews Park in 1956, after the man who worked for the City from 1926 and oversaw much of the work done at the park, including the WPA projects. The park was designated as the Norman City Park New Deal Resources Historic District and placed on the National Register in 2000.” (waymarking.com)
Source notes1) https://www.waymarking.com/waymarks/WMK2VT_Abe_Andrews_Park_Norman_City_Park_Norman_OK 2) "Leaning on a Legacy" - the WPA in Oklahoma, by Marjorie Barton. 3) https://www.ocgi.okstate.edu/shpo/nhrpdfs/00001572.pdf 4) https://www.ci.norman.ok.us/parks/andrews-park
Site originally submitted by hamquilter on February 6, 2014.
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