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Cape Central High Photos

Ken Steinhoff, Cape Girardeau Central High School Class of 1965, was a photographer for The Tiger and The Girardot, and was on the staff of The Capaha Arrow and The Sagamore at Southeast Missouri State University. He worked as a photographer / reporter (among other things) at The Jackson Pioneer and The Southeast Missourian.

Come here to see photos and read stories (mostly true) about coming of age in Southeast Missouri in the 1960s.

Please comment on the articles when you see I have left out a bit of history, forgotten a name or when your memory of a circumstance conflicts with mine. (My mother says her stories have improved now that more and more of the folks who could contradict her have died off.) Your information helps to make this a wonderful archive and may end up in book form.


831 North Street

831 North street 01-010-2014I parked in front of this house at 831 North Street when I took the pictures of 347 North Pacific Street for another story. The house looked like it must have been something Back in the Day, so I banged off two record shots of it.

Here are some stories from The Missourian about the families who lived there over the years. Most of them are briefs. If they were longer than that, I included a link.

  • December 24, 1941 – Among students home for the Missouri School of Mines at Rolla for the Christmas and New Year holidays are Alvin G. Haas, a senior in mechanical engineering, son of Mr. and Mrs. Alvin Haas, 821 Themis Street; Eddie Vandeven, a junior in electrical engineering, son of Mr. and Mrs. Edwin H. Vandeven, 831 North street; and John Leming, a freshman, son of Mr. and Mrs. Wm. E. Leming, 300 North Pacific street. [Editor’s note: “William” was always spelled “Wm.” in Missourian style. So far as I know, that’s the only name that was routinely abbreviated.]
  • August 13, 1943 – At a meeting of a pinochle club with Mrs. Edwin H. Vandeven, 831 North street, Thursday afternoon, awards among the members were won by Mrs. John Knaup, Mrs. F.X. Roth and Mrs. Leslie J. Eagle, with Miss Lillian Nenninger receiving a guest prize. At an extra table of guests, including Mrs. John A. Vandeven, Mrs. John Nenninger, Mrs. Wm. Nenninger and Mrs. Joe Francis, awards went to Mrs. John Vandeven and Mrs. Wm. Nenninger.
  • October 27, 1947Mr. and Mrs. James Kearney, 831 North street, are the parents of a son, born at 3:50 o’clock Saturday afternoon at St. Francis Hospital. The child is the fourth in the family and fourth son. Mr. Kearney is associated with the Markham and Brown Construction Company.

Eight residences share $80 prize

  • December 28, 1948 – Eight Cape Girardeau residences, entrants in the annual outdoor Christmas lighting contest sponsored by the Retail Merchants Association will share in the $80 prize money following ratings by three out-of-town judges Monday night. For the section north of Broadway, first prize for the most artistic display was won by Mrs. James Kearney and sons, 831 North street.
  • April 13, 1949Mr. and Mrs. A.P. Rueseler, 820 Merriwether street, have purchased the James Kearney home at 831 North street and expect to take occupancy of it within the next two or three weeks. Their daughter, Miss Ruth Rueseler, a student at the University of Missouri in Columbia, will be here to spend the summer vacation with her parents in their new home.
  • January 28, 1950 – In the midyear commencement class Wednesday at the University of Missouri wil be Miss Ruth Ruesler who is to be graduated with a B.S. degree in Elementary Education and who, on Feb. 6, will become a faculty member at Franklin School. She is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Albert P. Ruesler, 831 North street who will go to Columbia Tuesday to attend the ceremonies. The Ruselers now have with them for a weekend visit another daughter, Mrs. C.E. Burgett and her small daughter, Margaret Ruth, and young son, Mark Douglas, of Columbia.

Crystal shower and dessert bridge

  • August 28, 1950 – For Miss Ruth Rueseler, fiancee of Charles Knote of Cape Girardeau and daughter of Mr. and Mrs. A.P. Rueseler, 832 North street, Miss Rosemary Craig and her mother, Mrs. John Craig, honored the bride-elect Saturday afternoon at a crystal shower and dessert bridge.
  • February 16, 1951 – Numerous parties have been given in honor of Miss Ruth Gene Leming, fiancee of William Lewis Tucker of Jackson…. Mrs. A.P. Rueseler and her daughter, Mrs. Charles Knote, were hostesses at the Rueseler home, 831 North street, as friends greeted Miss Leming at a crystal shower.
  • December 30, 1967 – Miss Judy Carole Edwards and Ronald Charles Rueseler were united in marriage last Saturday afternoon at the Westminster Presbyterian Church in a double ring ceremony performed by the Rev. Thomas N. Bass. …The former Miss Edwards is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Harold Edwards of Kennett. Mr. Rueseler is the grandson of Mrs. Albert P. Rueseler, 831 North street.

Department of “Why Bother?”

Skinny brick building in Glouster OH 11-09-2014I didn’t pay much attention to this building when I was northbound through Glouster to the Burr Oak Lodge where I was staying the last time I was in Athens, Ohio, but I did a double take on the way south. (Glouster is the place where I shot the epitome of a small-town football game last fall.)

That is one skinny building

Skinny brick building in Glouster OH 11-09-2014I had to stop to make sure it wasn’t an optical illusion.

No, it really WAS that skinny. It got bigger at the other end, but I could easily span the back wall without having to stretch my arms out as big as I had gestured before to describe the size of a fish that got away. (Click on the photos to make them larger.)

Only eight bricks wide

Skinny brick building in Glouster OH 11-09-2014That wall was only eight bricks wide. If a standard brick is eight inches long, and you figure the space for the mortar between the bricks is half an inch or less, that would be, let’s see 8″ x 8 bricks x 7 mortar rows @ 1/2 inch equals just 67.5 inches or a little more than 5-1/2 feet wide. Allowing for the thickness of the walls, the open space inside the thin end would have had to have been less than four feet.

Why would anybody use that many bricks, not to count the labor of laying them, for such a small return of space?

I don’t know the answer to that question, but my guess is that both bricks and labor were cheap in Glouster when that building was constructed.

Bricks were a big deal

Hocking Block - Ray Charles Plaza - 05-14-2014Here’s a really good history of the region that explains how important the iron, coal and brick industries were.

Curator Jessica is somewhat of a brick expert, so she’s always looking for SE Ohio bricks like this Hocking brick she spotted when we were walking around the Ray Charles Plaza in Albany, Ga.