Historic Cracker House on Main Street structurally deficient

After nearly a century and a half in St. Joseph the historic "Cracker House" is being torn down.

Posted: May 10, 2019 7:36 PM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo) Just off the corner of Main and Michel street lies a piece of St. Joseph history.

The Cracker House, named after the original owner's groundbreaking discovery of the saltine cracker, has seen better days. The nearly 150-year-old building has stood as a monument to the past.

"[It's] very uncommon to be able to still see and look at and touch the roots of such an important piece of cultural history," Isobel McGowan local preservationist said.

Despite its' significance, the building has been in disrepair for years. After numerous attempts to restore the building, recent weather has weakened the integrity of the structure.

The frequent rain and high winds have contributed to the gradual weakening of the structure, and now the building is in danger of collapsing. The owner sent in a demolition crew to begin tearing the historic home down brick by brick.

People that live here say they're sad to see the home go. 

"It's a loss," McGowan said. "It impoverishes our community everyone that’s lost."

With so many historic homes in our area on the same path as this one, preservationists stress the importance of keeping the history of St. Joseph alive.

"We must invest in our neighborhoods, we must invest in our historic assets," McGowan said. "What we have left that’s endangered we must invest in."

Demolition crews have torn down the parts of the structure they feared would collapse eliminating the danger to nearby homes. The city did issue an emergency demolition for this property and while they're working with the current owner of this building they are prepared to step in if need be.

Saint Joseph
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Mostly cloudy skies across much of northwest Missouri and northeast Kansas Tuesday which resulted in cold temperatures across the area. We saw some freezing rain to the south of St. Joseph Tuesday afternoon. The warmer air will start moving back into the area as we head into Wednesday afternoon with highs in the 50s. The rain chances will start to increase as we head into your Thursday and Thursday night.
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