Skating at the Mound in a tent


Roller skating was very popular in Bartlesville beginning with the Coliseum Roof Garden located downtown Bartlesville. Their grand open was December 4, 1908. Thereafter, every decade had at least one popular skating venue.

Moonlite Roller Rink
Moonlite Roller RInk at the Mound

The Moonlight Roller Rink (spelled 2 different ways in their ads) opened for business at the Mound in a large tent. The grand open took place on Saturday, March 7, 1953, however, it didn’t last long. A huge snow and sleet storm blew in on April 19, 1953, and the skating rink tent became coated with ice and was destroyed.

Moonlight Roller Rink
Moonlight Roller Rink at the Mound

As a result, there were never any other skating rinks at the Mound, and downtown brick buildings were the preferred venues for skating rinks since that time.

Also, on a side note, in this same storm nearly 100 head of yearling cattle brought in three days earlier from South Texas to feed on Oklahoma’s bluestem pastures were trampled and frozen to death during the storm!

~WILDCAT WANDERINGS~  I remember when we went to school at Central Junior High School in Bartlesville, Oklahoma circa 1963-1965. The most important part of my life was the skating rink! I remember going with sis Linda Spears, and meeting up with Sue Smith, Barbara Cornelius, Nettie Rickman, Carty Thornbrugh, Donna Thornbrugh, and so many more!!! I think most people have a skating rink in their pre-teen years, and it is a special memory!

Kat in tree at Mound
Kat in tree at Mound


Osage can you see…By the sun shinning bright

As you approach Bartlesville from the west, you will get glimpses of the Mound by way of twists and turns, most usually with a watercolor sky painted teal blue dotted with marshmallow clouds. As you snake down Highway 60, you will gradually make a sudden drop to the valley below known as Bartlesville.  This scenic highway will finally usher you to the Mound, but you will first drive past the airport. Fittingly, this drive always reminds me of landing in an airplane, with dips, turns, and the final drop to my destination. 


Up ahead you will then see the burnt sienna brick and concrete buildings that rise out of the former Indian Territory area known as downtown. This area has integrated history with anecdotes of great men, outlaws, braggarts, cowards, the common and the brilliant, oil magnates and cowboy movie stars, with great love stories mixed with tragedies, all rolled up, with the sun glinting gold at certain times of the day. I suspect that not enough ink or paper could ever document all the thousands of life stories and drama that has been played out in this great city like a perpetual Hollywood blockbuster epic. First, you will have to drive past the Mound to enter this great dynasty, which separates Osage County from Washington county. The Mound has witnessed all this glorious infusion of history!


 A great video presentation of the Frank Phillips Mansion by Jim & Kim Goss on OETA television.

Bartlesvillia presents: The Mound


Many a month has come and gone Since I wandered from my home In those Oklahoma hills where I was born. Many a page of life has turned, Many a lesson I have learned; Well, I feel like in those hills I still belong.

‘Way down yonder in the Indian Nation Ridin’ my pony on the reservation, In those Oklahoma hills where I was born. Now, ‘way down yonder in the Indian Nation, A cowboy’s life is my occupation, In those Oklahoma hills where I was born.

But as I sit here today, Many miles I am away From a place I rode my pony through the draw, While the oak and blackjack trees Kiss the playful prairie breeze, In those Oklahoma hills where I was born.

Now as I turn life a page To the land of the great Osage In those Oklahoma hills where I was born, While the black oil it rolls and flows And the snow-white cotton grows In those Oklahoma hills where I was born.

The Mound is a hill that is located on the Washington County/Osage County line in Bartlesville, Oklahoma. The online dictionary defines a mound as a natural elevation, such as a small hill. The Mound stands 866 feet tall. It ranks as the 513th highest mountain in Oklahoma, and 58,997th highest mountain in the United States.  (Google:  Peakery)  Since February 8, 1955, the City of Bartlesville has had a water tank on top of the Mound. In 2010 the older double water tanks were replaced with a decorative water tank that lights up at night.  This blog will cover the history of the Mound with the subjects:

  • Airdome
  • Circus
  • Skating Rink
  • Grand Ole Opry show
  • Pioneer businesses around the Mound
  • Human Interest Stories
  • Fireworks shows
  • Sunset Country Club
  • Agape Mission
  • Airports
  • Historical periods
  • Gunner, the Caney River Hound Dawg runs the Mound
  • KAKC Radio and Zesto

“The county seat of Washington County, Bartlesville was Oklahoma’s first oil boomtown and a leading energy center of the twentieth century. Located in west-central Washington County, the city lies near the Washington-Osage county line, forty-seven miles north of Tulsa, and is crossed by U.S. Highways 60 and 75, State Highway 123, the South Kansas and Oklahoma Railroad, and the Caney River. In 2000 Bartlesville covered a land area of 21.105 square miles and had 34,748 residents, making it Washington County’s largest and most populous community.”  (Google, Oklahoma Historical Society)

Gunner Runs the Mound
Gunner Runs the Mound