Beno Hall

EDIT:  It turns out that the county record I was supplied were for the wrong location.  .  That error was that they were looking at block 12 of the city of Tulsa, not block 12 of the North Tulsa Addition – I should have caught it.   Now that all of those records are available through the Tulsa County Court Clerk’s office it’s much easier to resolve this error.  This edit will correct that error.


Although this is not actually about the Race Riot or its immediate aftermath, the presence of the Klan in Tulsa after the riot and looting and burning makes it relevant.  There are two interesting articles on the headquarters of the Tulsa Benevolent Association, as the local Klavern styled itself.  These maybe found at http://thislandpress.com/09/03/2011/beno-hall-tulsas-den-of-terror/ and http://www.tulsagal.net/2010/09/beno-hall-another-dirty-little-secret.html.

To begin, it is unclear at this time when the Tulsa Klan, no. 2, Realm of Oklahoma, Invisible Empire, Knights of the Ku Klux Klan Inc. actually began operating in Tulsa. The Tulsa World declared on July 24, 1921 that there was proof that the Klan was operating in Oklahoma City, and a story on July 29 referred to the “Muskogee Klan, no. 3.” On August 10, there was a public meeting at Convention Hall with Caleb A. Ridley, pastor of the Central Baptist Church of Atlanta and a noted spokesman for the Klan. On October 31, the first open air initiation of the Tulsa Klan was held for either 30 or 300 people.

According to Steve Gerkin writing for This Land (September 1, 2011) The Tulsa Benevolent Association was formed as a holding company for the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan Inc. January 1922. Six months later the TBA spent $60,000 for the land that held the then defunct Tigert Memorial Methodist Church at 501 N. Main.

The article further goes on to say that the land was bought from Centenary Methodist Church, and that the Klavern was built on Tate Brady’s wife Rachael’s land.  Unfortunately, Rachel Brady didn’t have an allotment (although her children did) and they were Cherokee.  501-3 N. Main is on Creek Land, specifically land granted to D. A. Storm by the Creek Nation in 1902.

Location of 503 N. Main on a plat mat with the location of Cherokee allotments.

Location of 503 N. Main on a plat mat with the location of Cherokee allotments.

Tigert Memorial Methodist Church, c1906. Corner of Easton and Main. Image in Special Collections

Tigert Memorial Methodist Church, c1906. Corner of Easton and Main. Image in Special Collections

Tigert’s membership had left sometime in 1920 for the newly built Centenary Methodist Church, at 631 N. Denver, on the southern border of Ruth Brady’s Cherokee tribal allotment, and the northern border of the original “North Tulsa” annexation.

Soon outgrowing the facility, the former Tigert church was razed and what was informally called Beno Hall was built.

1919 Directory showing Tigert Memorial at 503 N. Main.

1919 Directory showing Tigert Memorial at 503 N. Main.

Looking at the Tulsa City Directory over time, we can see that 501 (and 503) N. Main went through these changes.

1907-1921 Tigert Memorial M E Church (in the later years pastor was Rev. J. E. McConnell)

As a note, in 1920, Tigert ceased to be listed in main church directory, but was still listed at the street address. In 1921 Centenary Methodist was listed at being 1160 N Denver and organized in 1907, in 1922 Centenary was at 631 N Denver with the pastor, H.G. Cooke residing at 1160.

1922 Nothing listed at 501 or 503 N. Main.

Tulsa Benevolent Association listing in the 1923 Tulsa Directory.

Tulsa Benevolent Association listing in the 1923 Tulsa Directory.

1923-25. Tulsa Benevolent Assn is listed.

1926-7. TBA/Women of the Ku Klux Klan.

1928-1929 Women of the Ku Klux Klan/Miller E E./Ku Klux Klan.

Please note that E.E. Miller is in the 1928-1932 Klan Register held by Special Collections, McFarlin Library, The University of Tulsa. He is only listed for 1929, and no address is given.

His residence in the directory is Miller, Elmer E. (Daisy) 503 N Main. In the 1930 directory his residence is at 437c N. Main.

1930-6. The directory shows the address as Temple Baptist Church. (E.E. Miller).

1937. Central Church of the Nazarene

1938. The address changed to 505 N Main. Central Church of the Nazarene

1939. The addresses are listed as vacant.

1940. 501 Dixon Wm Restr, 505 vacant
1941. 501. The Moana nightclub. Chas C Goltry, mgr
1942. 501. The Moana roller skating. Chas C Goltry, mgr
1943. 501. The Moana roller skating. Chas C Goltry, mgr. Barton, Benj.
1944. 501 The Moana Skating Rink.
1946. Vacant
1947-8. 501. American Hardwood co. Lumber

A detail from Construction of Building 600 N. Main showing the north side of the former hall. Beryl Ford #D7271.

A detail from Construction of Building 600 N. Main showing the north side of the former hall. Beryl Ford #D7271.

North up Main, the Eveangelistic Temple in the distance. Cropped from Beryl Ford #A1884

North up Main, the Eveangelistic Temple in the distance. Cropped from Beryl Ford #A1884

1949-76. Evangelistic Temple.
1977-78 listed as vacant.

Simple enough.

The Sanborn maps show the address as being Block 12, Lot 4.

Block 12, Tulsa. Showing the corner of Main and Easton.

Block 12, Tulsa. Showing the corner of Main and Easton.

Block 12, Tulsa. Showing the corner of Main and Easton.

Block 12, Tulsa. Showing the corner of Main and Easton.

Block 12, Tulsa. Showing the corner of Main and Easton.

Block 12, Tulsa. Showing the corner of Main and Easton.

Looking into the County Records, Block 12 Lot 4, North Tulsa Addition

We follow this trail.

So page one.
Grantor                                                        Grantee
Cherokee Nation                                        N. J. Smith Patent 10-1-06
J. N. Baker, et ux                                        S. W. Marr Mtg. 5-15-03
Smith, Newton J.                                        M. E. Church Trustee wd 9-7-07
M. E. Church (South)                                 Bd. Of Church Extension wd 9-7-07
M. E. Church (South) Trustees,               Tigert M. E. C. S. wd 9-7-07

This is Tigert Methodist Church.

Page 2
Wright, G. N. Sr. et al                                Bd. Of Church Extention mtg no date
Wright, G. N. Sr. et al                                Bd. Of Church Extention mtg no date
1st Methodist Church                               Galt, Thomas T. mtg 5-11-09
Board of Church Extension                     Wright, G. N. Jr. Rel 5-20-09
Jones, P. C. et ux                                         Board of Church Extension mtg 5-22-09
Galt, Thomas T.                                          Episcopal Church Rel Mtg 7-8-14
Wright G. N. et al                                      Board of Church Extension Mtg 7-10-14
Ernslarger, A et al                                    do mtg 1-11-15

Page 3
Board of Church Ex                                  Jones, P. L. rel 10-30-19
Gardner, James H.                                    International Life Insurance Co. mtg. 11-13-19

Page 4
Tigert Mem M. E. Ch.                                Public Copy bsn 12-5-21 (This is after the entire congregation decamped to Centenary)
Gardner, James H.                                     Tulsa Benevolent Association W. O. 4-23-20
Tulsa Benevolent Association                 Farm Home Sav. Loan. Mtg 4-20-23
International Life Insurance Co.            M. E. Church R 4-23-23
Calvert Mtg Co.                                          Equitable Trust Co. rel mtg 3-28-27
Marr, S. W.                                                  Baker, John and Elizabeth rel mtg 1-17-28

For those keeping track, the Tulsa Benevolent Association is the KKK in Tulsa. And 1928 was the last year that the Roster was correctly kept.

Page 5
Sheriff Tulsa Co.                                          Farm Home Savings and Loan Deed 12-11-29
Farm & Home Savings and Loan             Early, T. J. WD 3-24-30
Early, T. J.                                                      Farm & Home Savings and Loan mtg. 3-24-30
Do                                                                  Temple Baptist Church WD 3-24-30

Page 6
Temple Baptist Church                              The Central Church of the Nazarene WA 7-27-36
The Central Church of the Nazarene      Jennings, Tom Sledge mtg 12-23-36
The Central Church of the Nazarene      Jennings, Tom Sledge mtg 3-23-37
Jennings, Tom Sledge                            The Central Church of the Nazarene rel mtg 12-27-37
Jennings, Tom Sledge                            The Central Church of the Nazarene rel mtg 4-27-39
The Central Church of the Nazarene     Farm and Home Savings and Loan WA 7-27-36
Farm and Home Savings and Loan        Harris, Mary Lou WA 5-16-39
Harris, Mary Lou                                       Farm and Home Savings and Loan WA 5-16-39
Harris, Mary Lou                                       Pollack, Ben 2nd Mtg 617-40

Page 7
Farm & Home Savings & Loan                Campbell Chas. Co Luna WD 3-26-45
Campbell Chas. Co Luna                          Farm & Home Savings & Loan Mtg 3-26-45
Wallace, Robert A. v Luna                      Campbell Chas. Co Luna Rel Mtg 8-29-45
Campbell Chas. C. et ux.                         Wallace, Robert A et ux Mtg 9-1-45
Funston, Don, et ux                                 First Pentacostal Holiness Ch. WD 9-21-48
Campbell Chas. Co Luna                        First Pentacostal Holiness Ch. WD 10-2-48
First Pentacostal Holiness Ch.              Chamberlain, Emma Mtg. 10-2-48

And so on until 1981 when the World Missions of Tulsa released the property to Public.

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