HISTORICAL POSTCARDS OF SPRINGFIELD, MISSOURI
Lohmeyer Funeral Home
The postcard is a MWM (Mid-West Map Co., Aurora, Mo) "color-litho." Its caption reads "Springfield's Modern air conditioned Funeral Home. The most modernly equipped establishment in South West Missouri." The penciled-in date (ca 1950) suggests a mid 20th century date for the card.
The large funeral home at 534 St. Louis Street (address later changed to 630 St. Louis Street) was built in 1904 and owned by the Lohmeyer family. It was considered the first actual funeral home in Springfield, as funerals previously were usually held in people's parlors. Alma Lohmeyer, the daughter-in-law, took over the family business in February, 1923, and named the business the Lohmeyer Undertaking Company. Other family members Herman and Paul leased a building at 304 East Walnut to open a new funeral home.
Alma Lohmeyer was one of the first women in the United States to become a licensed embalmer. In the mid 1950s, probably around the time the postcard was produced, Alma's daughter Hazel took over the family business. She married Jewell E. Windle and the funeral home became the Jewell E. Windle Funeral Home. The Windles' son, Jewell Jr., became a partner in the business in 1947 and their grandson, Jewell III, joined the firm in 1976.
In 1981 the Jewell E. Windle Funeral Service was sold to Bill Cantrell, who operated the business under the name Jewell E. Windle-Cantrell Funeral Home. Abundant Life Ministries owned the building in 1984 and in 1985 Southwest Missouri State University purchased the property. It was demolished in 1987 and made into a parking lot for residents of Kentwood Dormitory.