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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.

Trinity’s Balcony and Pews

Trinity Lutheran Church 08-1978 135Here’s another series of photos of the demolition of Trinity Lutheran Church. I’m focusing on the balcony and pews this time. I always thought it was impressive how the balcony swept out over the congregation. I always liked to sit in that section.

A simple church

Trinity Lutheran Church 08-1978 134

The church eschewed ostentation. It was a simple, but elegant building with a distinct lack of geegaws.

The only jarring element for me was the cheap-looking acoustic tile ceiling. I often wondered what the original church ceiling was made of.

I noticed stuff like that as a kid. My first grade scrapbook contains the September 19, 1953, entry: “The whole family went to 8 o’clock church. I didn’t wiggle very much. To pass the time away, I counted 13 bugs on the wall….

“I have loved the habitation of Thy House”

Trinity Lutheran Church pews c 1977Shortly after taking those photos, I got to watch the church being dismantled, ironically under the words of Psalm 26:8, “Lord, I have loved the habitation of Thy house and the place where Thine honor dwelleth.” I’ll spare you the rant this time. I got that out of my system when I posted photos of the church’s altar.

Pews at Trinity Lutheran School

Trinity Lutheran School 03-14-2010At least two of the pews ended up in the hallway at Trinity Lutheran School.

Trinity Lutheran Church gallery

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

5 comments to Trinity’s Balcony and Pews

  • Bill Stone

    The old Centenary Methodist Church had a sweeping balcony too before they remodeled it and turned the church interior around, eliminating the balcony. I enjoyed sitting up there, but the old interior is just a memory. The wood floor would creak with every step.

  • Susan Fee Means


    I have a picture taken by one of “The Tiger” newspaper photographers of old Trinity during demolition, and you can clearly see “Lord, I have loved the habitation of Thy house, and the place where Thine honor dwelleth” in the midst of all the destruction. It’s heartbreaking. I really did love that old church! Thank you for posting all of these pictures so I have them to share with my children.

  • Keith Robinson

    Ken, your images of the interior of the sanctuary evoke strong memories and emotions for me. As you have so eloquently illustrated, the original sanctuary was a long witness to the passing of time and lives; from baptisms, to confirmations, to weddings, to funerals. The annual children’s Christmas program was a much anticipated event in the Advent season and I was looking forward to the date when I (hopefully) would get married in that place.

    Like Pastors, we are called to serve, to further God’s will. At times, we are faced with challenges to determine how to best serve God’s will in our place and time. The challenge presented us ofttimes is a difficult decision between our emotion and worldly desires versus what would best serve God’s needs to grow his flock. Thus was the decision that was placed before the congregation at Trinity so many years ago.

    The new sanctuary, for me, while simply not as beautiful as the original, has taken up the march and still marks time and lives; my wife and I were married there, and family member confirmations, anniversary celebrations and funerals have been there as well.

  • Terry Hopkins

    I know where Jesus is and now I know where, he used to sit…Thanks for the update.

  • Phyllis Hansen

    Keith you are so right in your thoughts. Ken, I miss the old church for so many reasons, but time has moved on and memories have been made in the new church as well. Thanks for the pictures to remind me of decorating for Christmas with Walther League, midnight Christmas Eve services, my wedding, funerals – oh, so many things!

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