Site Before Bombing · Site Today
Before April 19, 1995, the two-block area between NW 4th and 6th Streets and Robinson and Harvey Avenues served as the northern edge of the downtown core. This area was a workplace to hundreds of people.
5th Street ran through the area where the Reflecting Pool
now sits. During construction of the Memorial, the east side of the grounds had to be lowered 11 feet; the west side was raised approximately seven feet to compensate for the grade change from east to west, and to create a level area for the Reflecting Pool.
The Gates of Time
rise from former crosswalks at 5th Street intersections on the east and west ends of the block.
The Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building occupied the area now known as the Field of Empty Chairs
An American elm tree, now called the Survivor Tree
, was surrounded by a public, asphalt parking lot. On the corner of NW 5th and Harvey, the Oklahoma Water Resources Board Building sat west of the Athenian Building.
The two buildings were so heavily damaged by the bombing, they had to be razed. The Rescuers' Orchard
now occupies the site where those buildings once stood.
The Memorial Museum
occupies a portion of the former Journal Record Building. The city's weekday business newspaper was published inside the building, while other companies and organizations occupied office suites on other floors.
The Children's Area
, before the bombing was a covered loading and parking dock from which the Journal Record
newspaper was shipped.
The bomb's physical damage extended well beyond this two block area. Hundreds of buildings were damaged. In all, 16 structures in the surrounding blocks had to be torn down and removed. In their place, new buildings have gone up, and many others have been refurbished.
The Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum is an affiliate of the National Park System, owned and operated by the Oklahoma City National Memorial Foundation. The Foundation does not receive any annual appropriations. All funds to operate the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum are raised through Museum admission fees, Memorial Store sales, your donations, private fund raising campaigns, the Memorial Marathon and an endowment. Thank you for your support!
The Story of the Memorial
[cell phone tour]