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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.


Cape Cut Rate Endangered

Old Cape Cut Rate 635 Good Hope 04-16-2011The Cape Girardeau Historic Preservation Commission announced its list of 11 of the city’s most endangered buildings in hopes of raising awareness about the building’s uncertain futures.

One of the buildings is the old Cape Cut Rate Drug Store at 635 Good Hope, the southeast corner of Good Hope and Sprigg. I’ve been shooting the building for at least three or four years, but I kept putting off doing a story until I got the photo I wanted. I guess it’s time to go with what I’ve got.

Going to be teen club

Cape Cut Rate 635 Good Hope 10-24-2011I was on a bike ride a couple of summers ago when I noticed a dumpster in front of the building and some work going on. I stuck my head inside and was told that someone was going to fix it up for use as a teen hangout to give neighborhood kids a place to go. I didn’t have the equipment with me to shoot in the dark, so I said I’d come back. That was the last time I saw any activity in the place.

Roof peeling off

Cape Cut Rate 635 Good Hope 04-21-2011In the few minutes I spent inside the old drug store, I could see that the roof had been leaking for quite some time and that the interior was charred like it had caught fire at some point. I happened by the place on a windy day and say big pieces of roofing material flapping in the wind, so I know where the water came from.

A regular stop

Cape Cut Rate 635 Good Hope 10-24-2011

No telling how many times I passed through these doors because we spent a fair amount of time in the Haarig district.

Dad’s construction office was in Farmers and Merchants Bank, the place we did our banking.

I got my hair cut by Ed Unger at the Stylerite Barbershop.

We bought our ice from the Pure Ice Company

Suedkum Hardware was better than Disney World. (Or course, Disney World hadn’t been invented yet.)

You hoped you weren’t sick enough to see Dr. Herbert

If it was REALLY serious, you went to St. Francis Hospital

We could buy clothes at Schades and shop for groceries at Hirsch’s Midtown.

At Sprigg and William, in the next block up, you could go to church at St. Mary’s, buy a car at Clark Buick and a TV from Lorberg’s.

In later years, we’d stop in to see Doris.

What is Haarig?

Cape Cut Rate 635 Good Hope 04-21-2011Haarig was the heavily German section of Cape Girardeau. You can read about the history of Harrig and its buildings in this National Register of Historic Places registration form. Here is a list of last year’s endangered buildings.

Old Jefferson School has been removed because it was torn down.

635 Good Hope Photo Gallery

Click on any photo to make it larger, then click on sides to move through the gallery.

5 comments to Cape Cut Rate Endangered

  • Tim Luckett

    Cape Cut rate was the first place in Cape I bought beer as an 17 year old man (boy) college freshman. Bud was on sale for 89 cents a six pack and ABC beer was 69 cents a six. Those were the days (1967). By the way, I was able to buy the beer because SEMO college had made a mistake on my student ID and made me 4 years older than I really was (21 instead of 17). I used that ID all the time until I was 21.

    • Scott Dudley

      I remember you playing football at SEMO Tim. Defensive tackle I think. My dad and I use to go into Cape Cut Rate almost weekly. Bought us a St. Louis Globe Democrat and a Sporting News. Farmers and Merchants where my dad let me have a Christmas club account. Hardware store, Unnerstalls, Covingtons, Als. All great memories. You could walk there at night time and not worry in the 60’s and 70’s. Now sad to drive through in the daytime!

  • stephen cotner

    sad to say that will be the death of that building..i grew up sprigg and good hope. my family shopped at hirsch’s. ate many fried catfish dinners at al’s midtown lounge.st.louis had globe drug stores.they were in south city. globe was like cape cut rate,they had everything you could imagine. from majic pictures of jesus that if you looked it one way he was knocking on the door,look at it from a different angle and he had his one index finger pointing upward.
    cut rate used sell those dyed baby chicks for easter.
    i remember thinking i was so grown up when i bought my mom a bottle of “evening in paris”LOL. purple bottle with a silver cap.it’s sad to see that part of cape falling apart. it was once a commerical hub of activity

  • Harold Stratton

    When I was a junior in the high school on Pacific Street, I worked for 25 cents/hour at the Cape Cut Rate drug store on the SW corner of Broadway & Sprigg. Max Blitstein was the owner. However, when summer vacation came, Don Revelle & I went to Idaho where we worked for 90 cents/hour in the US Forest Service.

  • Cindy Lowes

    I remember going to Hirch’s Thriftway, Evans Cleaners, Unnerstall’s Drug Store, Cut Rate, Seudekum’s, Beirshwal’s Meat Market, Martin’s Bakery, and Sunny Hills almost every Saturday morning. After spending an hour playing with the puppies at Sunny Hill, while they cleaned out the cages, I would go to Al’s Midtown for an orange soda and help my grandpa clean behind the bar. Grandma would sometimes make me a hamburger or give me a piece of pie. Grandpa had just wanted it to be a bar, but grandma had other ideas. She thought it would be a nice addition to serve food with the beer. She was pretty persuasive and grandpa let her put in the lunch counter. The rest was history.

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