Several blocks away from the decidedly more handsome churches in the historic center, the Westminster Presbyterian Church is distinguished among other St Joseph churches in its Tiffany windows. While these may not be spectacular from the inside or from without, they remain rare examples of elegant glassworks through the whole of Missouri.
As stated before, many of the Victorian and other mansions in St Joseph are privately owned by businesses or individuals. The Miller-Porter-Lacy House was first confused by this author for a museum (since one sits next door in another mansion). The present owner was gracious enough to show off the historic interior and the embellishments made by previous owners over the past century. The chandelier over the main dining room once graced the main hall in the Hotel Robidoux downtown, a flagship structure torn down in the early 1980s.
This great residence actually rose from humble roots in the early 1880s. At first a simple farmhouse with two stories and single shell, the Millers widened the home into a mansion by 1900. With thirteen rooms and nine chimneys spread over 11,000 square feet, this listing on the National Register of Historic Places is one of many Frederick Avenue homes that crown spacious hilltops with extensive acreage, all of course shaded by towering hardwood trees.
Built around 1911 at 25th and Frederick Avenue, this castle-like structure was once the residence of Dr Jacob Geiger, and today remains unique among St Joseph residences. Now a branch of the United Missouri Bank and a perfect building for such an enterprise, the former home is one of several on the National Register of Historic Places.
Still a working fire station (still No. 9) on Frederick Avenue, this ancient wonder is over 100 years old, worthy in its own right to grace the National Register of Historic Places. Although slight of frame and rising only two stories, the old features of bay window and wooden interior are all that's left of a field where fire station horses were grazed and stables and wagons were kept.
Historic buildings go through several phases over the centuries, but in St Joseph most still fortunately show something of their origins. On Frederick Avenue (which draws the commuter away from the historic downtown), there are several listings on the National Register of Historic Places. First among these is the Christian Sachau Saloon, also known as American-Gertsch Glass, Inc, with only a faint identifier on its upper outward wall. Today, the building is a perfect example of old commercial structures from the Victorian era.
Glore Psychiatric Museum. This museum is billed as one of the 50 most unusual museums in the country. The museum uses full-sized replicas, interactive displays, audio-visuals, artifacts and documents to show how mental illness has been portrayed and treated for the past 7500 years.
For a city of it's size St. Jo has a large number of museums. I like museums and I have not had time to go to all of them. I think my sister would think I was rude if I went all the way to St. Jo and spent all my time at museums instead of visiting her. Here is a list of museums I have NOT been to yet. I have NOT been there and I don't normally suggest places I haven't actually been to my self. I just thought they deserved to be mentioned on a page about St. Jo.
Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art is on Frederck Blvd. not far from the Glore Psychiatric Museum. There is also the Knea-Von Black Archives, National Military Heritage Museum (which I drove in front of but was closed), Roubidoux Row Museum, St. Joseph Museum, Twin Spires Religious History Museum (Which I drove past and looks like a big church.), and Buchanan County Courthouse. There are also two theaters and some day I am going to take my wife to 'Lovers Lane Historic Landmark' just to be romantic. You can find out more about these places at www.stjomo.com . In future trips to see my sister I'll update this page as I make time to go to all those spots.
Society of Memories Doll Museum is at 12th and Penn. It is closed on Mondays and during the Winter so best to call 816-233-1420 to find out when to go.