Iconic club still going strong

Posted October 22, 2013 at 11:00 pm

By MICHAEL BUSHNELL
Northeast News
October 23, 2013

PC-eagle club.jpg

This week we take a look at the Queen Anne-styled James Ogelbay residence after its conversion to the Fraternal Order of Eagles Lodge, Aerie #47 F. O. E. The three-story mansion was located on the southwest corner of 11th and Central, across from where the Lyric Theatre stands today.

Ogelbay was an early day wholesale grocer here in Kansas City, arriving in the 1870s when the young city was in the midst of a huge population boom and expansion. Ogelbay and other prominent families such as the Coates, Birds, Gunns and Porters made a substantial mark on the city’s early economy. One of Ogelbay’s passions was Trotter breeding, and he was one of the first in the area to abandon the horse and buggy as a primary mode of transportation.

As downtown developed and commercial buildings replaced residential developments, Ogelbay sold the home in 1904 to the Fraternal Order of Eagles who used the building as a lodge for more than 55 years. Prior to 1912, the Eastlake porch shown here in this postcard was torn off the home and a large, brick-columned front porch was added. However, none of the building’s heavy ornamentation so associated with the Queen Anne style was changed or covered, as was the unfortunate case with the Telephone Building at 11th and Oak. The lodge building was sold in 1959 to a developer who, with “progress” in mind, razed the stately old house and erected an office building on the site. Eagles Aerie #47 then moved to the area near Blue Ridge Boulevard and 47th Street near Raytown, Mo. where they are still active today.