Oklahoma Presbyterian College

Photo of the Oklahoma Presbyterian College.  Most recently used as the headquarters for the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma.

In 1894, Rev. C. J. Ralston gave money to build a school in Durant in memory of his young son, Calvin, who had drowned at Armstrong Academy. The school operated for a few years as Calvin Institute, was renamed Durant Presbyterian College, and later became Oklahoma Presbyterian College. The administration building, a three story red brick structure trimmed with white stone, was erected in 1910 at a cost of $150,000. It housed offices, the library, class rooms, and a gymnasium. A second building, Graham-Jackson Hall, had dorm rooms on the main floor, an auditorium on the second floor, and a heated swimming pool in the basement. Beginning in 1910, the college operated as a school for girls and young women, providing instruction from high school through junior college. The government helped pay the expenses of the Choctaw and Chickasaw students who made up about half of the student body. The college was known for its outstanding basketball team, the Cardinals, National Champions in 1932 and 1933. Lack of financial support eventually led to the closing of the school in 1966. The Choctaw Nation purchased the buildings for their headquarters in 1976.