Laura A. Clubb
Laura A. Clubb
“Most famous citizen of Kaw City was Mrs. Laura Clubb, whose art collection overflowed her home [and] the Clubb Hotel.”
Laura Abigail Rutherford Clubb, the “Fairy Godmother of Kaw,” was born in Missouri and graduated from Southwestern College in Winfield, Kansas. She was a pioneer schoolteacher and taught in a small sod schoolhouse before teaching oratory at Oklahoma State Baptist College (now Oklahoma Baptist University). From her childhood, Mrs. Clubb was an art lover. When she and her husband, Ike, struck oil on their ranch in Kaw City around 1900 she took a trip around the world and amassed the nucleus of an amazing art collection. Heralded by many as the finest private collection of paintings in the world, Mrs. Clubb displayed them in their opulent home until more space was needed and the million-dollar collection was moved to the family’s Clubb House Hotel. In 1947, she donated 150 of the paintings to the Philbrook Museum of Art in Tulsa to “assure that the paintings would be available to the public in years to come and will be preserved with care and dignity.”
Laura Clubb’s collection of over two hundred world famous paintings was appraised in the millions of dollars and attracted thousands of art lovers to see them in an obscure little hotel lobby, The Clubb House Hotel, in the remote hamlet of Kaw City, population 900!
Clubb came with her husband to settle near Kaw City, Oklahoma, a few years after the land run of 1893.