Cherokee Nation Begins Work to Save Historic Saline Courthouse 

Saline Courthouse in Rose, Oklahoma.

Published September 5, 2018

Renovations will restore, preserve and modernize the structure for future use

TAHLEQUAH, Okla. — Cherokee Nation is beginning renovations to the Saline Courthouse in Rose. The rural district courthouse was one of nine built in the late 1800s by the Cherokee Nation and is the only one remaining today.

“For too many years this structure has been inaccessible to the community, and it is time that we give this project the time, attention and resources it deserves,” said Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker. “It is vital that we continue our steadfast commitment to preserving these historic sites and bring new life to the places that have been deep-rooted throughout the history of the Cherokee people.”

Working with the Saline Preservation Association, Cherokee Nation Cultural Tourism developed a master plan to restore, preserve and modernize the structure for future use by the public.

Necessary renovations include repairing interior walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors. Exterior renovations vary from siding and window repairs to fresh paint and trim work. In addition, the plan includes efforts to modernize the building’s mechanical, electrical and plumbing, ensure ADA accessibility, and add new parking.

The work is being performed by Builders Unlimited, a TERO-certified company. The project is being managed by Cherokee Nation Cultural Tourism and is slated to be complete in spring 2019.

“We are pleased to be in a position to support this preservation project so that this structure may once again serve the people within the community,” said Shawn Slaton, CEO of Cherokee Nation Businesses. “We look forward to this site joining our other tourism destinations and educating future generations about the history and culture of the Cherokee people.”

Throughout the years, CNB and the tribe have completed several projects to ensure the stability of the structure until final plans could be made. That work included a structural assessment, porch and chimney restoration, roof stabilization, remediation of lead-based paint, and preservation of the spring house.

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