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The Archivist: Oklahoma City Biltmore Hotel rug lost to history

Mary Phillips: A special rug designed as a centerpiece to the Oklahoma Biltmore Hotel was lost with the hotel.
By Mary Phillips, For The Oklahoman Published: March 31, 2014

Interior designers and ordinary homemakers have used rugs to cover floors and accent rooms since people moved indoors.

A very special accent rug made its debut on March 8, 1932, in Oklahoma City.

This rug was specially woven for the new Oklahoma Biltmore Hotel at 228 W Grand.

The hotel was heralded as the state’s tallest building with 619 rooms and seven elevators.

On March 7, The Oklahoman described the Biltmore’s grand-opening preparations:

Crews of workmen were scheduled to work all night Sunday putting the finishing touches on the 26-story Oklahoma Biltmore hotel, which will have its formal opening Tuesday night at a dinner-dance.

“Work was in progress all day Sunday. Drapes and pictures were hung, and furnishings for the lobby and lounges were put in place.”

The hotel had two lounges, the north furnished in an English style, and the west lounge was more modern.

It was furnished with chrome tubular furniture with pale green walls and green stone floors.

Thick rugs have been placed, the central one has been designed especially for the hotel. It depicts the development of Oklahoma.

Its figures include an Indian teepee, an oil well, a coal mine, a viaduct with a train passing over it, the Biltmore hotel, the First National building and the Ramsey tower.”

The rug was 20 by 25 feet and also showed the Capitol and a covered wagon.

The hotel closed in 1973 and was demolished in October 1977 to make way for the Myriad Gardens.

It seems, like the building, the rug, too, has been lost to history.

If you would like to contact

Mary Phillips about The Archivist, email her at gapnmary@gmail.