Greenwood District replica travels to Tulsa

After traveling around Lawton, the replica has made its way to its new home.
Published: May. 30, 2023 at 6:40 PM CDT
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LAWTON, Okla. (KSWO) - Last summer, Lawton students created a replica of the Greenwood District. Today, it’s sitting in the Greenwood Cultural Center, just days before the anniversary of the Tulsa Race Massacre.

In 2022, Kim Jones and Onreka Johnson partnered with Cameron University to stimulate the minds of Lawton youth by challenging them to combine STEM and History.

”The idea was to let the kids kind of recreate what the Greenwood District looked like,” Johnson said. “The partnership started from there.”

The model is a replica of the area in 1920, just one year before the Tulsa Race Massacre..

While that event is remembered for mass death and destruction, before 1921, the Greenwood District was known for its thriving and affluent Black community.

Johnson said their goal was to give students a chance to see the Greenwood District as it was before.

”They were able to really see what it looks like through some of the pictures and some of the business information that Kim had provided,” she said. “Then they were able to take that knowledge and actually put it into something that they could see.”

After traveling around Lawton, the replica has made its way to its new home.

”It was displayed at Cameron University, it was displayed at City Hall, it was displayed at at McMahon Auditorium and then it took a little trip,” Johnson said.

”Now, it is at the Greenwood Cultural Center in Tulsa and they are ecstatic. They love it,” Jones said.

She added how the traveling project is all part of a bigger plan.

”We wanted to expand the project not only for the students here in the Lawton/Fort Sill community, but also in the Tulsa community,” Jones said.

But the pair has even bigger dreams for where the project could go next.

”We want to try to get it to Oklahoma City, the state capitol, so that kids there in the Oklahoma City area can, you know, extend the project to learn more about the building -- the STEM component of it as well as the historical component of Greenwood, Tulsa,” Jones shared.

Outside of the project’s obvious educational benefits, both Johnson and Jones said they want to set up their students to also be culturally well-rounded.

They said they’ll be using everything they learned from last summer and using it to continue building on their success.