Title: Swope Park, Superintendent's Residence

Description: Postcard of the Superintendent's Residence at Sixty-ninth and Elmwood avenue, in Swope Park

Historical Article: The superintendent's residence, built of native stone and surrounded by spacious lawns, at Sixty-ninth and Elmwood avenue, in Swope park, is pictured on this 1909 post card. It was printed in color in Germany.

The sturdy building still stands but has suffered from vandalism and fire. The interior of the building and roof have been partly destroyed. Demolition was being considered when eight members of the Kansas City Landmarks commission, headed by Mel Solomon, stepped in. They identified the house as being of architectural significance as an outstanding example of the work of Louis Curtiss, famous early-day architect. Now a long-range restoration is being considered with possible assistance from HUD.

Louis Curtiss was born in Belleville, Ontario, July 1, 1865. He studied at the University of Toronto and at the L'Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris. He was apparently drawn to Kansas City by the building boom of the 1880s and by the successful careers of his countrymen, Thomas and Bernard Corrigan.

From 1890 to 1892 he served as the assistant superintendent of buildings for Kansas City. He was a partner of Fred C. Gunn from 1893 to 1897, and during that time designed the Missouri building at the Chicago World's Fair. They also designed William R. Nelson's home, Oak hall.

After the partnership ended, Curtiss was commissioned (in 1898) by the Corrigan brothers to design the 6-story Baltimore hotel. This marked the beginning of 15 years of great accomplishment and activity on residential and commercial projects in Kansas City. The Willis Wood theater was one of his well-remembered creations.

Kansas City Times
September 26, 1970

Author: Ray, Mrs. Sam (Mildred)

Item Type: Postcard

Collection: Mrs. Sam Ray Postcard Collection (SC58)
See finding aid: http://localhistory.kclibrary.org/u?/Local,36981

Location: SC58

Local Subject: Swope Park; Parks; Curtiss, Louis

Digital Format: JPEG

Barcode: 20000134

Repository: Missouri Valley Special Collections, Kansas City Public Library, Kansas City, Missouri

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