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Sparrow Park

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Edwin Fontaine Sparrow was raised in Virginia, but around the turn of the twentieth century he won a government contract to operate as a merchant in Pawhuska in the Osage Nation. He soon moved to Oklahoma City in 1903 and invested in many business interests including meat packing plants, oil leases, and he was even president of a mining company in Arizona. On arriving in the city, he entered into a partnership with mill owner Andrew Goodholm to develop property. In what was considered a bold move at the time because it was so far from downtown, Goodholm and Sparrow developed this section of the Jefferson Park neighborhood between Robinson and Hudson.

Goodholm & Sparrow made use of a natural ravine running through the area to define the layout of streets and lots which created the unusual shape of this park and its sister, Goodholm Park.  Originally, Goodholm Park was a “play” park with a baseball diamond, tennis courts and playground equipment and Sparrow Park was a “garden” park covered with flower beds and a large rose garden. The developers donated the land for these two parks to the city in 1909 on the condition that the parks would bear their names. But in 1927 a dispute arose among neighbors over the actual name of this park - some residents thought the actual name was Jefferson Park and not Sparrow Park. It took intervention by the city clerk to confirm that Sparrow Park was indeed the name and that Jefferson Park was only a development name and there had never been a park by that name in this city.