Gilcrease Museum

The Gilcrease Museum is also known as the Thomas Gilcrease Institute of American History and Art [1]. It is located northwest of Tulsa, Oklahoma. It houses the largest and most extensive collection of American West art, along with a growing collection of art and artifacts originating from Central and South America. Thomas Gilcrease, an avid collector of art and oilman, is the museum’s founder. In 1958, he deeded the collection and the property to the City of Tulsa. Gilcrease Museum is managed by a public-private partnership between the University of Tulsa (City of Tulsa) and the University of Tulsa since July 1, 2008. The Helmerich Center for American Research at Gilcrease Museum was built in 2014 at a total cost of $14M. It provides a secure archive area that allows researchers to access the more than 100,000 documents, books, and maps the museum has acquired. Thomas Gilcrease was born in the Muscogee Nation (Creek) in present-day east Oklahoma. The federal government gave land held by American Indian tribes collectively to private citizens at the beginning of the 20th Century. He was a tribal member and was entitled to 160 acres (0.65km2) south of Tulsa, near Glenpool. This land became Oklahoma’s first major oil field, the Glenn Pool Oil Reserve. Gilcrease was a successful businessman. He founded the Gilcrease Oil Company in 1922. His original holdings were greatly increased within ten years. During the 1920s and 30s, Thomas Gilcrease traveled extensively throughout Europe. He was inspired by his experiences in European museums to start his own collection. His pride in American Indian heritage and his interest in the history of America West were the focus of his collecting