Meet one of Oklahoma's most lionhearted couples, Walter and Frances Edwards. They overcame an inconceivable armada of obstacles, setbacks, and disappointments to build hospitals, homes, and hope for thousands, which no one else would build.
Join John and KTOK/iHeartRadio star Gwin Faulconer-Lippert for the story of a husband and wife who improved life for everyone in Oklahoma City and many beyond, and never stopped practicing their motto of, “If you give your best to life, life will give its best to you!” This is the 86th episode of our original OKLAHOMA GOLD! radio program and podcast. Thank you Atwoods Stores for making it possible! Go HERE to listen to them all! Future episodes explore more great heroes, events, and movements of Oklahoma History. Thank you Atwoods Stores for making it possible!https://youtu.be/hd1brYgNGXE
Walter Edwards with his crew at the Edwards Scrap Iron and Junk Yard in Oklahoma City, which earned him a fortune and sustained him through the 1929 Stock Market Crash and 1930s Great Depression.
Hassman Heights in Oklahoma City, the first FHA-insured housing project ever undertaken “by Negroes for Negroes.” Walter and Frances Edwards built 800 bargain priced, top quality homes in this housing addition. When advised by a Federal Housing Administration official, “These houses are worth more than you’re asking,” Walter agreed, but added, “Negroes can’t afford to pay any more.” By the third decade of occupancy, not one of the by-then more than 600 homes had been repossessed for delinquent payments. Courtesy Oklahoma Historical Society.
Edwards Memorial Hospital in Oklahoma City, the first hospital in the South built, owned, and run by African Americans.
An early edition of the Edwards Elementary School in Oklahoma City, named by the community in honor of Walter and Frances Edwards…
…and the modern day version.
Many thanks to Atwoods Stores, a farm and ranch supply company based in Enid, Oklahoma, for their support of the Red River Institute of History and OKLAHOMA GOLD! Please support them as you are able! Wherever you are, you can order online from thousands of quality products on their terrific website HERE. Atwoods also has 66 stores in 5 states: Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas. In addition to farm and ranch supplies, Atwoods stores sell clothing, lawn and garden items, tools, hardware, automotive supplies, sporting goods, pet supplies, firearms, and seasonal items.
Read the full story at Walter & Frances Edwards – Hospital, Home & Hope Builders - Podcast,
from Oklahoma History, with John Dwyer