Working for Extra Credit

When I spoke to Dr. Lily Santoro’s Local Techniques in History Class, I offered to help students find information for the topics they had been assigned on local landmarks. The first step was to compile a list of posts about their subjects.

Jennifer was first out of the box

1956 SEMO Homecoming courtesy Steve McKeownThere’s always one student in the class who starts work right away. Jennifer Baker emailed me early on: “My topic is the Wehking Alumni Building on Broadway.  From what I have been able to find, the building was previously occupied by the First Baptist Church. Construction on it began in 1926. So, my project will start with the First Baptist Church and end with the Wehking Alumni Center.”

I had to confess to her that the building had been on my to-do list for a long time, but the only photos I had were ones taken of the 1956 SEMO Homecoming parade by James D. McKeown III and passed on by his son, Steve McKeown.

I did suggest that she check out a story I had read that Louis Houck was so enamored by reproductions of classic sculptures he saw at the St. Louis World’s Fair that he bought them at the end of the fair and donated them to the college. I heard that they were being displayed in her building after being moved out of Academic Hall. I suggested she look for Joel P. Rhodes‘ book, A Missouri Railroad Pioneer: The Life of Louis Houck, to see if I remembered it correctly.

Bingo. “Wow!  I just found a copy of this book as an ebook on line. Within minutes, I was able to read this section of Dr. Rhodes’ book on Louis Houck.  Thanks again for the help!  You are pretty cool!” she gushed.

Thanks to Jennifer, I finally got around to shoot the statues and former church for a future post. (If Jennifer is a REAL digger, she will uncover a story about a bank loan and why the building looks like it does. That’s the only hint I’m going to give because I’m saving it for my future post.)

Fairmount Cemetery

Aerial Old Notre Dame HS - New Lorimier and Fairmont Cemeteries 04-17-2011_5226The deadline for the project must be coming quickly because I got a flurry of requests on Wednesday.

Crystal Haugsness wanted an aerial shot of Fairmount Cemetery and a photo of the cemetery with Bingo World in the background.

Beer on the first date at age 13

Myrtle (Schilling) Kuehnert in Trinity Lutheran Church 11-12-2013Lucas Greenwalt was fascinated by Myrtle Schilling Kuehnert, part of my Last Generation project. ” I was wondering, if by chance, you would give me permission to cite one of your works for a poster presentation.  It was from a video interview you did where an elderly lady discusses her first date with her husband and they casually grabbed a beer at the age of 13.  My project is on the Evangelical United Church of Christ here in cape.  As you may know the church has very deep German roots and I feel as though this would be a wonderful reference when giving the history of the building.”

St. James AME Church

NAACP 08-10-1967Scott Bates drew the St. James AME Church. “I want to know if you would allow me permission to use a photo from your website. The photo that I would like to use is the photo with Mr. Kaplan speaking and Rev. Ward smiling in the back. This was from the NAACP president’s visit to St. James AME Church in 1967.”

Luke Haun wanted Fair photos

SEMO Fair by Mary Steinhoff 09-08-2011Luke wanted six photos: four from the 1964 fair; one inside the Arena Building in 1966, and a color shot that Mother took in 2011. I liked his taste. He picked out some of my favorites.

I wonder if any other students will come skidding in tomorrow? They may be in trouble. I have to wrap up a bunch of loose ends before getting on the road to Ohio at the end of the week, so I may not be around to look up photos.

I hope Dr. Santoro gives me extra credit for my work. I could use some help pulling up my grade point average.

 

 

Preservation Homework: Churches & Cemeteries

Aerial Common Pleas Courthouse 04-14-1964Dr. Katy Beebe invited me to speak to her historical preservation class at Southeast Missouri State University last year. Dr. Lily Santora asked if I would come back April 8 to meet with her class.

Dr. Beebe’s class was researching Main Street, so I put together a list of the stories I had done about downtown. Dr. Santora gave her class a wide variety of local landmarks. I’ll spend the next couple of days helping her students by posting links to stories I’ve done about their topics. I’m going to concentrate on churches and cemeteries today. (Maybe I can make up for all those assignments I didn’t turn in when I was a student.)

[Hint to students: don’t just read what I’ve written. The comments are generally more interesting than my copy. Feel free to post questions and comments of your own. My readers are a friendly group who love to share Cape’s history. Click on the photos to make them larger.]

First Presbyterian Church

St. Mary’s Cathedral

Christ Episcopal Church

Christ Episcopol Church 04-16-2011The church and May Greene Garden

Evangelical United Church of Christ

Crash knocks over sign in front of Evangelical United Church of Christ c 1966Crash damages church sign

 St. James AME Church

NAACP 08-10-1967National NAACP president speaks at church

Fairmount Cemetery

 St. Mary’s Cemetery

St. Mary's Cemetery 04-17-2011_5233Aerial of St. Mary’s Cemetery

 

 

St. Mary’s Cemetery

St. Mary's Cemetery 04-17-2011_5233When people talk about cemeteries in Cape, I think of Old Lorimier, New Lorimier, Fairmount and Memorial Park. I didn’t have any contact with St. Mary’s Cemetery until Wife Lila’s Mother, Lucille Hoffman Perry, was buried there in 1998.

There’s plenty of information on the city’s web site about the first three city cemeteries I mentioned, but all I could find in a quick search was that St. Mary’s is a Catholic cemetery that was founded in 1903. It is located on the west side of Perry Avenue where it turns into Perryville Road.  The aerial was taken April 17, 2011. (Click on the photo to make it larger.)

The bright driveway at the bottom of the photo wasn’t paved in 1998. It was just a rutted lane then.

Find a Grave

Lucille Hoffman Perry tombstone 09-15-2000The Find a Grave site lists 953 internments (but not Lila’s mother) and says it has 38% of the grave markers photographed.

UPDATE

After the story was published, Sharon Sanders, Missourian librarian and the keeper of Judy Crow’s flame, emailed me with this new information:

Thanks for doing this blog. I had never seen an aerial of the cemetery. I can point to exactly where my parents are buried.

The land was purchased for the cemetery in 1903 by the Rev. Eberhardt Pruente, longtime pastor of St. Mary’s Church. He borrowed the money from his sister, who was also his housekeeper, to pay for the land. Pruente, as well as his sister, are buried in the crypt under the crucifix in the center of the burial ground. The land was part of the Wenzel Hauptman farm. Mr. Hauptman is also buried at St. Mary’s.

Many years ago, my late writing partner and I updated her earlier book on St. Mary’s Cemetery. It lists all those buried there, pertinent dates, who they married, who their survivors were, etc. It’s still available through the Cape Girardeau County Genealogical Society for $50.

 

Copyright © Ken Steinhoff. All rights reserved.