Photo courtesy of Justin Miers Photography

Photo courtesy of Justin Miers Photography

Captained by Tim and Bridgid Cook Home History researched by Carol Haaksma and Written by David Knox

The house at 517 NW 17th is a great example of a shed roof bungalow. The roof, instead of pitching toward the sides of the house, pitches toward the front and back. Large dormers on the roof increase the usable floor space upstairs. The low roof line has the typical wide, unenclosed eave overhang with decorative brackets underneath. The exposed rafter tails and beams reflect the influence of the arts and crafts movement, which tried to make visible the handiwork that went into design. Also typical of the Craftsman style bungalow is the large front porch with windows, typically with multiple small panes on top and a single large pane on the bottom. This house, a beautiful, well preserved example of a shed roof bungalow, has most of its original glass.

Anton Classen, Charles Colcord, J.B. Zeigler, Margaret McKinley, and John Shartel formed the University Development Company in the early years of the 20th century. The lot at 517 NW 17th Street was included in a purchase of 360 acres from McKinley Avenue to Walker from NW 16th Street to NW 23rd Street. In 1912 the Development Company sold the lot to Gilbert A. Nichols.

Gilbert A. Nichols was one of the most influential builders in Oklahoma City, instrumental in the development of many of the neighborhoods here. He began by building single homes and expanded into the development of residential areas. He is known today mainly as the developer of the town of Nichols Hills in 1929. He built the house at 517 NW 17th Street and in 1914 sold it to Austin Miller and Susan Miller.

The Austins purchased the house for $4,300 which included a mortgage of $3,000. Austin was the manager of the Oklahoma Furniture Manufacturing Company. In 1919 the Millers sold the house to Lew W. Price and his wife Katherine.

The Prices paid $10,000 for the property. Members of the Price family would live in the house for the next 38 years. Lew and Katherine Price were listed as residents of the house in the 1920, 1930 and 1940 censuses along with their two children Stanley and Robert and Stanley’s wife Rebecca and their daughter Jane. Lew was born in 1861 and learned telegraphy before joining the St Louis-San Francisco Railway company in 1879. He worked for them for 53 years. In 1916 he moved to Oklahoma City working as a division passenger agent and later as the general agent for the passenger department. His name appears frequently on ads for the railway detailing prices and times for railway travel. Lew Price retired from the railroad in 1932.

The June 12th, 1940 edition of The Oklahoman reported that Mr. and Mrs. Stanley Price and Bob Price would hold a 50th wedding anniversary party for their parents at 517 NW 17th Street. Lew Price died in the home on March 30, 1942. Katheryn Price died in 1943 shortly after her husband. Lew left the house jointly to both his sons Stanley and Robert.

Robert Price, born in 1904, served in World War II between 1940-1945. In 1943, The Oklahoman reported that Lt. Col. Robert J. Price was involved in the training of members of the Chinese Army in US Army field methods. In 1951, Robert Price transferred his part of the property to Stanley and Rebecca Price.

Stanley Price was born in 1893 and was a World War I infantry soldier. He was an oil man and commercial photographer. In 1938 The Oklahoman reported that S.W. Price, 517 NW 17th, city oil man, won $50 with a photo of his wife and daughter. Rebecca Price led an active social life and her activities were often reported in The Oklahoman. She was active in the women’s service organization PEO. The January 29th edition of The Oklahoman reported that she appeared on the WKY-TV show “The Cook’s Book” exhibiting her circus cookies.

Stanley Price died in 1957 and Rebecca and Jane jointly inherited the house. Jane signed her interest in the house to Rebecca. In the last years of the 1950s the ownership of the house was transferred from the Price family. The house went through a variety of owners before being purchased by the Newberrys in 2013.