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Local History

Old Pitts Chapel

Old Pitts Chapel Sold; New Church Planned

"Having disposed of their church property at the corner of Phelps Avenue and Jefferson Street, the members of the Pitts Chapel, a colored Methodist Church, are having plans and specifications prepared for the erection of a new edifice at the corner of Pine Street and Benton Avenue. They expect to have everything ready within a few weeks to start work upon their new place of worship which will be of brick and cost in the neighborhood of $8,500. The old building is to be torn down and the site will be used for commercial purposes." Republican, 25 Oct 1911

Pine Street was later renamed Tampa Street. The image from a 1910 Sanborn Fire Insurance map, above left, shows the outline of the building at Phelps and Jefferson. The map indicates that it was a brick building, that was fifteen feet to the eaves with a three story tower on the front. The church may have been similar to the Second Baptist Church in Neosho, Mo., above right, published in the Black Families of the Ozarks, Volume Four-B.

A photograph of the old Pitts Chapel could not be located, but it can be seen in the background of a postcard that is postmarked 1911. The image is blurry but the church can be seen to the right of the trolley. The church is set back from the street as shown on the Sanborn map.

The Sanborn Fire Insurance map is courtesy of the University of Missouri Digital Library. The postcard is part of the library's collection.

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