Playgound image long gone from banks of the Blue River

posrtcard-blue river.TIF

By MICHAEL BUSHNELL
Northeast News
September 26, 2012 


What is now nothing more than a re-routed, re-manufactured drainage ditch north of 63rd Street was once home to thousands of boat owners in the Kansas City and Independence area who made their summer home along the banks of the beautiful Blue River.

This historic postcard published by the Fred Harvey Company shows the Blue River looking North from 15th Street (Truman Road). Canoe and boat rental outfitters lined the banks of the Blue with names like the Star Boat Company and the Blue River Boat House, shown at left in the view on this postcard. Farther north, near where 12th Street crosses, was the Kansas City Yacht Club. In this view, the Blue River seems to be full, but other views of the same time period show the river as barely a trickle where one could wade across its breadth and not get completely wet in the process.

With the pending encroachment of industry along its banks, recreation-based businesses closed their doors one by one, and the river became a dumping ground for everything from industrial waste to rusting automobiles to household items. Today, the river, north of 12th Street to the northern border of the old Sheffield Steel Mill, flows in a narrow concrete channel largely for flood control purposes. Virtually no evidence exists of what was once known as Kansas City’s water playground.

Comments are closed.

  • The White Company delivers innovation through history

    March 4th, 2015
    by

    Northeast News “Our standard has always been to build a car able to surmount any road conditions which might be encountered.


    Postcard shows business as usual in 1909

    February 18th, 2015
    by

    Northeast News Risqué postcards, like the one shown here, have been around for as long as postcards themselves.
    Prior to the advent of postcards as a private communication medium, those looking


    Missouri’s home-state railroad

    February 11th, 2015
    by

    Northeast News Published for the Missouri Pacific–Iron Mountain Railway, the promotional postcard shows a picturesque view as described by the caption: “Along the Missouri River for more than 100 miles


    The early days of downtown

    February 4th, 2015
    by

    Northeast News Hardly the downtown of today, this black and white lithographed postcard shows a view looking east-northeast from the Coates House Hotel at 11th Street and Broadway Boulevard.
    Published by


    Ginger Club Businesses offer Snappy Service

    January 28th, 2015
    by

    Northeast News Hoping to bring more business to their block, merchants in the 300 block of East 12th Street organized a Ginger Club, using a Ginger Snap as an emblem.


  • A little slice of Beverly Hills in Independence

    January 21st, 2015
    by

    Northeast News “Beverly Hills Acre Tracts. Ideal home sites on easy terms. City conveniences, no city or special taxes, half-acre lots at the price of city lots.”
    So reads the marketing


    The Interurban could get you there

    January 14th, 2015
    by

    Northeast News The message on this Hall Brothers color postcard mailed on April 24, 1917, to Miss Lula Mercer, care of The Hotel Washington, room 516, Portland, Ore.


    Beauty Springs eternal on Cliff Drive

    January 7th, 2015
    by

    Northeast News “Fountain and Cliff Drive, North Terrace Park, Kansas City Missouri.”
    So reads the description on this divided back, hand-colored postcard published around 1910.


    Out with the old…

    December 31st, 2014
    by

    Northeast News “Kissing the Rod” “O heart of mine we shouldn’t worry so,
    What we’ve missed of calm we couldn’t have you know,
    What we’ve met of stormy pain and of sorrows


    Holiday wishes from the king of rock

    December 24th, 2014
    by

    Northeast News This week we take a break from historic cards and offer up a jewel for the Elvis Presley fans among us.
    This postcard shows a uniformed Elvis Presley and


  • Local Weather