Broadway Demolition

When I first saw this photo, I thought it made have been the razing of the St. Charles Hotel on Main Street. I’m going to let you tell me what building is in the foreground, because I’m not sure. Here are some clues, though.

Criss Cross Cafe?

This photo, shot from a little more to the east shows a tantalizing amount of info. There’s a Pepsi sign advertising what looks like Criss or Cris Cross Cafe on the side of the building.

Like the movie Blowup

A 1966 British movie about a photographer who photographed what might have been a murder scene came to mind here. The photographer took the negative into the darkroom and made increasingly larger blowups of it trying to figure out if he really saw what he thought he saw. Of course, the bigger the enlargement, the more the image degrades, and the less sure he was.

Playing the British photographer, I blew up just a portion of the frame above, enhanced the contrast and applied some sharpening filters to bring out maximum detail. That provided a few more hints.

Clues to the location

  • There is a street sign that looks like it says Broadway.
  • There’s a Rt. 34 marker
  • There’s a Conoco Station sign.
  • There’s a three-story building with a doorway on the corner. It looks like it might be Finney’s Rexall Drug Store.
  • There’s some kind of parking, maybe for a hotel and / or cafe.

Did Subway shop replaced Finney’s?

This October 2009 photo looks like a Subway shop may have replaced Finney’s. A Google Earth aerial of the intersection shows a vacant lot at the northwest corner of Sprigg and Broadway today. That might mean that these workers razed the whole building, or it might have been taken down later.

Any idea what was in the building being torn down?

26 Replies to “Broadway Demolition”

  1. Finneys was not on the corner. It was a liquor store. Too early in the day for me to remember the name. Someone will come up with it, I am sure.

  2. Ken, at 5:30 a.m. these gap fillers come to mind quickly:
    1) The pictures were looking south at the intersection of Broadway and Sprigg street.
    2) I am pretty sure that the city route for Highway 34 was, and may still be, in Broadway, then south on Sprigg Street to Morgan Oak, then to the old bridge??
    3) Finneys Drug Store was not on the corner but one or two doors to the west.
    4) The building on the Southwest corner, now Subway, was the second Cape Cut Rate Store, the other being on the Southeast corner of Sprigg and Good Hope.
    5) The building being torn down I think originally was a bakery, “Bauers Bakery” comes to mind. The very corner today is vacant and the location, about where the tractor is working first became a one-story doctor’s office.
    6) Today the south part of the “new” building is the Sisco Barber shop (where I visit about once a month).
    7) The north part of the “new” building has had several tenants, now, I think, a health shop of some sort.
    8) Further north, an alley for entrance for parking behind Broadway Prescription Shop and Sisco’s, and others.
    9) The corner property and adjacent west on Broadway is owned and occupied by Broadway Prescription.
    10) The Conoco station was on the northwest corner of Sprigg and Themis across from Ford Groves.
    11) Parking behind Subway is for the hotel, rooming house, above Subway, and for Finneys and one time Jones cafe or ??
    12) On fifth or sixth look, it appears the one time Cape Cut Rate building was torn down (two stories) and replaced by the new building housing the Subway shop.
    13) Alley to parking behind Sisco can be seen on first picture.
    14) NO CLUE about the “_____Cross Cafe” or what was on the southeast or northeast corner of Broadway and Sprigg. Behind sotheast corner building (now has been bought and being restored) was a barber shop.
    15) This is my filler and I may be partially or totally wrong. Next??

    1. I’ve been busy today tracking down the Rush Limbaugh / Terry Jones story to pay much attention to the comments on this piece. Wow, you folks have done a great job.

      I saw that Finney’s Drug Store was located at 709 Broadway, which IS slightly west of the corner, but I assumed that maybe they had gone all the way to the corner.

      Nice job.

  3. Comment # 2 — The three story building on the southwest corner of Broadway and Sprigg was the “Cape Hotel.” I’m pretty sure now that it burned and had to be torn down, later replaced by Subway.

  4. Ken–
    Cant pinpoint the building you have in mind

    Wasnt Finneys in the middle of the block?

    A Coop Drugstore was on the corner where Subway is now, I think


    1. You’re right. I’m going to stop doing any research at I’ll. I’m just going to post the photos and let you guys fill in the blanks.

      Just to make it more interesting, I’ll throw in some Ohio, NC and FL pix to keep you confused. (Note to self: don’t use photos with palm trees.)

  5. The Subway shop was the old location of Cape Cut Rate Drugs. I seem to remember an old hotel in back and upstairs.

  6. You guys are right on it. The building being razed was replaced by a new building and Broadway Prescription moved down a building or two, to that corner. The Doctor’s office behind and further north on Sprigg was Dr. Elrod’s Office (My Mom worked for him in that office).
    Cape Cut-Rate Drug Store was first owned by the Blitsteins. In the 80s it was still Cape Cut-Rate but Mr Kelley owned it and it was more of a convenience/liquor store. I am not sure when that location became a Subway shop.

  7. I can’t exactly tell if it is on Broaway or Sprigg jusT south of Broadway……..I can tell you who is demolishing the building….Sam Warfield and his crew…..He did that for many years in Cape.

  8. Elroy is mostly correct. However the “Chris Cross Cafe” (my Grandfather’s cafe) was located on the northwest corner of Sprigg and Broadway. It was directly in front of the ’56 Chevy wagon in the “Blowup” picture. The name can be seen on the side of the building. My Grandmother’s first name was Christine (hence the name Chris) The business burnt sometime in the late 60’s after my Grandfather left town and moved to Florida. All that’s left now is an empty lot.

    Does anyone remember Otis Jones’ Bar and Grill located between Finney’s and the Cape Cut Rate? Otis and his brother wore nothing but white pants and
    t-shirts and could be seen walking up and down Broadway reading a newspaper throughout the 50’s. My Grandfather (and most of Cape Girardeau) loved his hamburgers. He used to say that “Otis was the only guy he knew that could pick his nose, scratch his butt and fry hamburgers at the same time!”

    My wife’s (Vickie Kelley Kasten’s) first cousin was Nip Kelley who owned and operated the Cape Cut Rate for years before Subway acquired the building. She remembers very well when her father’s (The Rev. Fred Kelley’s) El Camino was stolen when he parked it in front of the Cut Rate. It turned up in Virginia a couple days later.

  9. This is looking south from Sprigg as it crosses Broadway. Mo. 34 goes to the Bridge. The Conoco station located on the west side of Sprigg was owned by Roy Craft. It was called “Travelers Conoco”

  10. Brad, I sure remember Jones’ Bar & Grill. When our family went to the movies, first we would stop in next door to the show and get goodies to eat (I can’t remember the name. Maybe someone else does), then go to the movies and afterwards, walk down to Jones. The front had like a garage door that he would put up in the summer and peanut shells were all over the floor. Men would get a draft beer and the ladies and kids would get those awesome mugs of rootbeer. I remember seeing him years after they closed walking on Broadway….and didn’t he have a bicycle also?

    As to your comment about “Otis was the only guy they knew that could pick his nose, scratch his butt and fry hamburgers at the same time!”, we use to say that about Mrs Lewis (Mother of Bill, Frank and Freeman) that owned and operated Wimpy’s when they were on the corner of ’61 and Cape Rock Drive. Now that is one place everyone misses.

  11. I didn’t see a mention that Traveler’s Conoco sometime moved across the street, from west to east of Sprigg. (It’s now a pet and outside fixtures shop.)

  12. Looking for where the old Paul’s cut rate drug store is now located. Bought some Nu-Root scalp and shaft Nautural hair grease with bear grease. Liked it very much. Want more

  13. Finney’s drug store was at 709 Broadway where I worked in ’48 and ’49. Jones was to the west of Finneys. At one time Manning Greer had a hardware store adjacent to Finney’s to the west. The Jones were father and son not brothers. Everyone has heard of the special flavored hamburgers at Jones that Odie fried. Also anyone could buy beer if you had the money.

  14. WELL, KEN. . . . . HERE I AM AGAIN. . . . .
    So delighted to see a picture of the Chris-Cross Cafe! Another FAMILY RESTAURANT- but this time, on my husband’s (Jack Hawk) side. As his brother, Brad Kasten, explained, the cafe was named after their Grandmother, Christine. She was a wonderful cook and she got up at 4 am every morning to make homemade cinnamon rolls. THEY WERE HEAVENLY! She did all the cooking and Grandpa Charlie helped. I worked there as a waitress my Jr. summer.
    During or shortly after WWI, Charlie Dieckmann, a US Marine, brought Chris home from England who was in the British Army. Chris had a heavy British accent and they were both a lot fun.
    Prior to The Chris-Cross Cafe, they operated Michael’s Sundries on Broadway which also had a soda fountain and delicious hamburgers.
    And prior to that- they had a bar at the corner of Independence & ?? west of (across the street from) the new Cape Courthouse.
    Anyway, I was so glad to see a picture of the Chris-Cross Cafe so that I can put it into our family history that I have been writing for several years.
    I always look forward to your articles and pictures. Thanks for your contributions to the newsletter!

  15. Keith you and others are probably already aware that the Sanborn Fire Maps are an excellent means to see what buildings occupied a given address during your research year. Even will tell you how many stories and the building materials the building was constructed from.

  16. ONE MORE THING I FORGOT TO MENTION ABOUT THE “NAME” (CHRIS-CROSS CAFE)- not only was part of the cafe’s name (Chris – after Grandma Chris), but the cross came from the fact that they had just moved into the building “caddy-corner/southwest” and lived upstairs- ACROSS from the café! Their café was located on the northeast corner of Broadway & Sprigg facing the Cape Cute Rate. We parked behind the café, while most of the customers walked there to lunch from their businesses in the immediate area. The food, usually a beef or pork roast, meatloaf, mashed potatoes and gravy and a steamed vegetable- was hot and ready to serve, so they could eat and go within their respec-tive lunchtimes. There were also big tubs of ice cream and a soda fountain – and dishes to wash! It was such a pleasure to meet all those business people-they were a great bunch. Made it a lot of fun to work there!

  17. Hi I’m replying to Brad and Michael. My grandmother Lurene White Whitener shared with me last night she once owned/ ran the chris cross café with Aunt Christine. Of course, as soon as we got off the phone I Googled it. It’s so cool to find an old picture of it. However, I didn’t imagine I would find relatives I’ve never met in my search! I would love to hear from you, share more family stories you may have. Please email me
    I remember your grandmother, my great Aunt Christine, I was a little girl when I met her. She made my sister and I a quilt that was my favorite.

    1. I am Christine Dieckmann’s granddaughter, Patricia (pat) was my mother. How were you related to my Grandma Chris? Would love to hear from you! My name is Lynne Birk. I live in Jackson Missouri. Please contact me via this sight and I will give you additional contact info. Thanks!!

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