Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Court house and its imposing stairway

From when I was a small boy, I was in awe of this building. It sits slightly less than half way up Grandview Avenue's hill, on the west side of the street and faces east; parking is not allowed along the street. I marvel that any adult would start at the bottom of the steps and walk up. I did it as a boy, have done it as an adult but I was breathless from my climb, and I was in good shape then, running more than six miles a day. The building itself is stately, with a sense of humor. Inside, on one of the walls above a stairway is a sign warning about "No spitting" and a subsequent fine of $.25. I was in the building a few times when a trial was in session. Ronnie Havens's father was an attorney and a few times we went to see him. We did not understand much of the trial proceedings, but we watched for at home, he was a quiet man, scholarly to me; in the court room he was speaking emphatically, emotionally, almost angrily and he was a very different man than the one we saw in their home.

Atop the building is the framework of a star and every Christmas it was lighted and could be seen from many places about town. The hill next to the stairs is covered with small boulders of native stone, sand stone, and ivy grows between the rocks. I used to climb the rocks rather than use the stairs as it was both challenging and fun. It was fun except for the times that I stirred angry swarms of bees or wasps and I could not escape their wrath for the uneven surface of the rocks, the tangle of vines, kept me prisoner and so I was stung on a few occasions.

On the south side of the building is an empty lot, but when I was a kid, it was where the old State Theater stood. I have no photographs of my own of the State Theater as I did not know that I would need them. My memory was good and I knew that the State Theater would live in my heart and mind as long as I lived. It still lives for many of us but the number is fewer. I wish I had known more about the future then but I thought Pawhuska would always be the same. Time marches on.


  1. I can still remember George Briggs making short work of the steps..he always told others he could reach downtown before them by walking while they drove...and he did..he was always at the Triangle building before them..

  2. I still cannot join as a do that on purpose?