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The Grove, Public Bath House
The Grove, Public Bath House
TitleThe Grove, Public Bath House
DescriptionPostcard of Public Bath House at The Grove park
Historical ArticleThe public bathhouse pictured was constructed in a day when many Kansas Citians had no bath facilities in their homes. The building, based on the design of a famous Roman bathhouse, was located in the Grove, a heavily wooded city park at Fifteenth street and Benton boulevard. The 11-acre tract extends three blocks along Fifteenth and is one block wide. It was acquired by the city in 1898 at a cost of $155,000.

A large wading pool was constructed in the deep ravine of the park in 1911 and was popular with children. The field house, with administrative offices and an enclosed swimming pool open to the sky, was opened in June, 1914. Later pergolas, playground apparatus, ball fields and tennis courts were added. Croquet was played every month of the year, and there was horseshoe pitching for the elderly.

Park records of 1920 state, The triple-use bathhouse furnishes administrative offices, 24-hour comfort stations, 12-hour shower bath service, an open air summer swimming pool for both sexes (but on different days), two waiting rooms, women's restrooms with lockers and four electric hair dryers, showers both private and general and two tub baths for women.

Attendants furnished bathing suits for 10 cents, towels or soap for 2 cents each. At the time, this combined park and playground was considered the most completely equipped and finest in the city.

Today the neighborhood is no longer strictly residential. Business and traffic dominate the scene. Bath service was discontinued in 1935. The tennis courts were removed because they were seldom used. The swimming pool was closed in 1955, and the entire building razed in 1963.

Still available at the park is a fine baseball diamond, basketball courts and playground apparatus. The grassy open space with its towering trees is still a welcome sight to nearby busy Fifteenth street, now called Truman road.

Kansas City Star
June 7, 1969

AuthorRay, Mrs. Sam (Mildred)
Item TypePostcard
CollectionMrs. Sam Ray Postcard Collection (SC58)
See finding aid: http://localhistory.kclibrary.org/u?/Local,36981
Local SubjectParks
Grove Park
Digital FormatJPEG
RepositoryMissouri Valley Special Collections, Kansas City Public Library, Kansas City, Missouri
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