Editor’s Note: Past|Present is a video series from The Star that travels through time to show how scenes Kansas City depicted in vintage postcards look today. Have a postcard you’d like to share with our team? Tell us about it here.
Fraternal organizations like the Oddfellows, Elks and Masons were a staple of American life in the late 1800s and early 20th century. They met in halls like the Scottish Rite Temple at 7th Street & Ann Avenue in Kansas City, Kansas.
The 1909 Gothic Revival style structure replaced the group’s original home, which had been destroyed by fire three years earlier. The new version was made of brick and limestone, most notable for the kind of crenelated parapets often found on medieval castles.
With its large meeting rooms and auditorium, the temple served, until Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall was built a few blocks away, as the largest “event space” in town.
It was the headquarters for Red Cross activity during WWI, and a center for relief operations after the catastrophic floods of 1951.
Today, slot machines are the main attraction inside what’s called the 7th Street Casino. The Wyandotte Tribe of Oklahoma bought the building in 1996 and reopened its doors to jackpot seekers in 2008.
Looking for more Kansas City history?
How the Darby Corporation in KCK helped the US win World War II
When the Kaw ran wild in 1951
A massive Masonic temple on the other side of the state line