Originally built in 1917 for Mr. and Mrs. F.L. Mulkey, the mansion was designed by Albert F. Stewart in the Greek Revival style with an eclectically-styled landscape.
In 1927, Mr. and Mrs. Robert A. Hefner and their family moved into the 16-room mansion. Mr. Hefner was an oilman who served the State of Oklahoma and the City of Oklahoma City in multiple roles. He was elected to a six-year term as a justice on the Supreme Court of Oklahoma in 1926. Later, from 1939-47, he served as the mayor of Oklahoma City. During this time he earned the distinction of being the first Oklahoma City mayor to serve multiple terms.
Oklahoma Heritage Center Mansion
In 1970, the Hefner family donated their home along with all of its furnishings to the Oklahoma Heritage Association. The association performed minor renovations and preserved the home’s historical and architectural integrity. From 1970 through 2006, the Oklahoma Heritage Association and the Oklahoma Hall of Fame called the mansion home, hosting numerous weddings and special events throughout the years.
In 2006, the Oklahoma Heritage Association moved into the former Mid-Continent Life Building, putting the Hefner Mansion up for sale.
St. Luke’s Mansion
In 2007, St. Luke’s United Methodist Church purchased the mansion, making the entire block a part of the St. Luke’s Campus. From the beginning, the vision for the mansion and gardens was to continue the proud tradition of this area while incorporating the physical assets into the ministry of the church.
Before moving into the mansion the interior underwent significant renovations. The first floor retained much of the historical integrity, while offering updated meeting and office spaces. The second and third floors provided much needed office space for the growing St. Luke’s staff. An industrial kitchen was also installed for the weekly ministry of Mobile Meals.
Gardens and Fountains
The gardens and fountains also saw improvements when St. Luke’s purchased the property. The beauty of the trees, shrubs, and flowers offer a downtown sanctuary for reflection, meditation, and celebration. A brick paver courtyard enables members and friends to honor or memorialize family and friends.
In the garden you will see the Christmas Box Angel, originally given by Richard Paul Evans to the Oklahoma Red Cross in memory of the children whose lives were lost in the 1995 Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building. It was relocated to the Gardens at St. Luke’s so that anyone who mourns may find strength and comfort in the future. Each December, a special worship service is held in honor of families who have lost a loved one and seek a spirit of hope during the Christmas season.
The Chapel was a gift from the family of Robert A. Hefner and is reminiscent of the family chapels of the grand old southern mansions. This area was renovated in 2010 by Cher Casso, allowing the area to continue as a sacred space for meditation, worship, and baptisms.
In 2014, the Carriage House was rebuilt from the ground up. Originally serving as a garage, storage, and gardening quarters, the remodel provided added office space.