The 1934 Central High School Girardot had wood block-style illustrations of Cape Girardeau landmarks in it. This is an artist’s depiction of The Red House, Louis Lorimier’s home. It, and the first St. Vincent’s Church, were destroyed by a tornado.
Red House in 2010
This is a photo of the Red House taken March 22, 2010.
The Red House’s website says, “After much discussion and debate it was decided that a reconstruction or replica of Lorimier’s original Red House was just not possible. No one actually knew for sure what the original trading post looked like. All the group had was a drawing of a house taken from the recollections of a local resident, Sara Bollinger Daughtery. What the board decided to do was construct a house of the French colonial architectural style – a style that would have been used by a French Canadian in this area at that time; and to construct this house following the design of Daughterty’s recollection. Rather than call the house a “replica” or reconstruction it would be an interpretation of the style of house that Lorimier may have built and lived in.”
3 Replies to “Red House Interpretive Center”
Steve Strom was one of the people instrumental in the actual building of the ‘new’ Red House. I was visiting for a couple of days during its construction and helped for about an hour in the terrible heat. My job was to work on a very small portion of a brick wall in the back, laying some bricks where no one would see 🙂 It is still a wonderful memory of helping to preserve a portion of Cape’s history.
Steve also was involved in the rebuilding of the Old Bethel Church near Jackson, Mo, which was a log cabin style of building. I’m not sure why that interested me so. When I would visit my parents, who still live in Cape, I would visit the work site, taking video of the progress. Here is a link to the video I made of the rebuilding of the Old Bethel Church
Many people donated many, many hours on both projects.
I enjoy your site.
Thanks for sending the link to that video of building the Old Bethel Church. Nicely done. I learned a lot about building a wood cabin from it.
Shy reader sent me an email that if you’re in Cape this weekend (Oct. 1, 2010), you can take advantage of Cape Girardeau River Heritage Day. From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, those interested can tour the Glenn House, Old St. Vincent’s Church, Red House Interpretive Center and Cape River Heritage Museum at no charge.