North America, Oklahoma

Heart of Route 66 Auto Museum Sapulpa Oklahoma

When you’re in the Tulsa, Oklahoma area, it’s hard to miss all of the things aimed at the Historic Route 66. The Heart of Route 66 Auto Museum in Sapulpa, Oklahoma sits squarely on it and is only one of the things in Sapulpa that you should see.

Heart of Route 66 Auto Museum Sapulpa Oklahoma

First, a little history.

When I was a teenager living in Albuquerque, my dad had this blue ’72 Chevy S-10 pick up truck, with very odd shifting. Even though my parents were divorced and I lived with my mom, he let me take it out on the weekends sometime. I got just a little attention driving that truck and thus became my love affair with old cars. Now, anytime I’m in a new place, I look for old car museums.

I found out about the Heart of Route 66 Auto Museum in Sapulpa when I was investigating things to do and see. I set out and a cloudy day, with my camera and bottle of water and off I went.

When you first enter the museum, you will be greeted by a friendly worker who will be happy to tell you all about the museum. There are three rooms of cars for you to look though. Each will have sign with information describing what you are seeing.

Heart of Route 66 Auto Museum in Sapulpa Oklahoma

One of the things that I was impressed with is that many of the cars are loaned to the museum for a time.

This 1957 Chevy struck me right off. I’m not sure if it was the color or the actual car. Isn’t it a beauty?

This 1958 BMW Isetta is the same kind of car that Steve Urkel drove in the television show ‘Family Matters’. Have you seen that show?

Heart of Route 66 Auto Museum in Sapulpa Oklahoma

The Route 66 Auto Museum in Sapulpa is also home to the World’s Tallest Gas Tank and it sits right outside, at 66 feet tall.

Visit Tuesday through Saturday 10-4 or Sunday 12-4.

Rock Creek Bridge

I’m not good with north, south, east and west, but if you come out of the museum and meet up with Route 66, turn right and drive just few minutes and you will find the Rock Creek Bridge on the right side of the road. The bridge is closed, but it’s a great place for photos.

The Rock Creek Bridge was built in 1921 to serve the Ozark Trail. The bridge became part of the highway system in 1926, when Route 66 was initiated.

Interesting Sculptures around Sapulpa

Sapulpa has many interesting things to see around the town. After you leave the Route 66 Auto Museum, take a drive around and see what you can find. This Crossroads of America sign is located where Route 66 and Highway 75 meet.

You can see the Guardian of the Plains Buffalo on Route 66, just as you are coming into town. Created by artist Jim Gilmore, it was dedicated November 16, 2007.

This is a fun sculpture, also located on Route 66, of a beer, pizza and soda. This is located just after the buffalo, on the same side of the street.

The Mini Statue of Liberty is currently located just in front of the Domino’s Pizza on North Mission Street. I was reading up on her and apparently she moves around, so keep your eyes peeled.

Tulsa Sapulpa Union Railway

I have a little story about the Tulsa Sapulpa Union Railway. I read about their train cars that are beside their building and of course, I wanted to see them. When I arrived, it looked like their office was closed and the gate was locked, but the gate that went around back was opened. I went around looking for someone to ask if I could look at the train cars, but found the cars before I found a person. Of course, I was already there, so I took some photos.

As I was coming back around the building, a man stepped out and I explained to him what I was doing. He very kindly asked me if I wanted to see some engines that are still in operation. Of course I said yes and I went inside with him. There were other people there and I noticed a bunch of televisions showing the grounds. They watched me the whole time. HA! How embarrassing.

These first three photos are the older cars and trolley they used.

 

These next two are the operational engines. The man told me they have one that leaves Sapulpa and one Tulsa each day. I have a friend who is an engineer on one of these out of New Mexico. So neat to see them up close.

 

Sapulpa Murals

I love street art, as you can tell by this post about Memphis street art. I’m sure there are more, but these are the two I saw.

Kiefer Castle

I’ve actually been to Sapulpa twice. The first time was a rainy day and as I was driving through the tiny town of Kiefer, this castle came into my view. Holy smoke. The first time I went to Sapulpa, I had to leave right after the museum because I got word that our neighborhood was being evacuated due to the river we live next to running over. Everything turned out fine for us, so I promised I would go back on a sunny day.

I decided to go past the castle again and I like the way these pictures turned out so much better because the sky is so blue and clear, which makes the colors pop more. I also found out some information about the Kiefer Castle.

The castle started as a small, regular house and over time, the owner has been adding onto it. At this point, he doesn’t know how many rooms or the square footage is in the house, but he loves it. The owner doesn’t want to be identified, but by all accounts, he’s a really friendly and nice person.

I hope that I have convinced you to visit the Heart of Route 66 Auto Museum and the rest of Sapulpa when you visit Tulsa. Be sure to drive through Kiefer either before or after Sapulpa. They are both really worth the few hours you will spend.

 

 

 

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20 Comments

  • Reply Christopher Rudder June 30, 2019 at 8:14 am

    I am definitely bringing my dad in case to Oklahoma. I never thought that here there’s a lot of vintage cars! I super love old cars – we both do. Anything that reminds me of yesteryears is fine with me including old houses. Not really a fan of bridges but these sculptures you mentioned captured my attention. I think all travelers should hunt these works of arts specially the mini Statue of Liberty.

    • Reply ppadmin July 1, 2019 at 7:38 am

      I hope that you and your dad will have loads of fun. I’m finding quite a lot to explore in Oklahoma.

  • Reply Thomas Bourlet July 1, 2019 at 1:27 am

    I have the most vague memory of passing this museum and wondering whether to go in or not. Now looking at the pics I wish I had gone in! It does look great.

    • Reply ppadmin July 1, 2019 at 7:37 am

      If you’re ever back by there, do stop. It was a fun visit.

  • Reply Rosemary July 1, 2019 at 3:24 am

    Sounds like you had a great time with such pleasant memories from your childhood. The cars are super cool especially the 1958 BMW and the sporty red Chevy. There is a lot more to do that I thought in the area and I really like the idea of the moving Statue of Liberty. Fun post to read.

    • Reply ppadmin July 1, 2019 at 7:37 am

      Thank you. I really did have a good time there. Little towns can sometimes hold a lot of mystery.

  • Reply Claudia July 1, 2019 at 10:02 am

    I really enjoy a good automobile museum. This one in Sapulpa, Oklahoma, is certainly well situated on Route 66! I agree that the 57 Chevy is gorgeous, but that little train trolley is super cute. There’s more to this town than I would have thought. Thanks for the introduction.

    • Reply ppadmin July 4, 2019 at 2:57 pm

      I was surprised by all there is to see in Sapulpa. It was so much fun to explore it. I really loved walking through and reading about all the cars at the auto museum.

  • Reply Punita Malhotra July 1, 2019 at 10:29 pm

    There’s something about vintage cars that brings a smile to the face, isn’t it? This is the kind of automobile museum I would like to visit. Do they have souvenirs…like tiny car models?

    • Reply ppadmin July 4, 2019 at 2:58 pm

      Vintage cars are so fun to see. They did have a shop with some souvenirs. I think I remember seeing some model cars there.

  • Reply Ami Bhat July 2, 2019 at 1:08 am

    The Auto museum reminds me of the one that we have in India near Delhi. The same kind of display but with more ornate variety – given that the country had a lot of royalty 😉 . I loved the railway museum that you have described here. That would be something unique to see.

    • Reply ppadmin July 4, 2019 at 2:59 pm

      Ah yes, no royalty here. These cars were or are driven by regular people who love the cars. Everything I saw was really interesting.

  • Reply Suruchi Mittal July 2, 2019 at 11:03 am

    The auto museum will surely keep us hooked for a long time. The 1957 blue Chevy is a beauty and I am in love with that color too. The tallest gas station is interesting and art around the Sapulpa is quite thoughtful. The colorful castle is just so perfect. Great pictures.

    • Reply ppadmin July 4, 2019 at 3:01 pm

      Ah, thank you. I couldn’t believe all there was to see in Sapulpa. I’m hooked on old cars. It would certainly be a treat to have one of my own.

  • Reply Tami Wilcox July 3, 2019 at 6:36 pm

    I love all things Route 66! I guess I just love the nostalgia and the Americana aspects of it. Crazy how well preserved some of the cars were that you got to see at the auto museum! Kind of wish we could go back to that era of life in the US. Much simpler times!

    • Reply ppadmin July 4, 2019 at 2:55 pm

      I agree with you so much! A simpler time would really be nice sometimes. Route 66 has been fun to live by. I’m taking a trip down it next week. I’m pretty excited!

  • Reply Shreya Saha July 5, 2019 at 12:40 pm

    Route 66 auto museum surely looks very interesting. The tallest gas tower is what took my interest. It’s nice to know how you brushed you’d childhood memories.

    • Reply ppadmin July 6, 2019 at 9:10 am

      It was a lot of fun to see it and think about that truck. Sapulpa was a cute little town.

  • Reply Medha July 6, 2019 at 12:58 pm

    I am not much into cars myself but the Route 66 museum’s vintage collection looks really cool. I also like all the interesting sculptures around Sapulpa. Kiefer Castle caught my attention!

    • Reply ppadmin July 28, 2019 at 6:19 pm

      I really like looking at old cars myself, but I like other things too. That castle was such a fun find!

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