Welcome to Cranky Puppy Farm!

This blog belongs to two Gen X-er's smackdab in downtown Kansas City where we've been renovating and decorating two old Victorians built in the 1890's. Our life is filled with 3 demanding Pomeranians (1 of them cranky, of course), honking cars, noisy neighbors and the hustle and bustle of city life but we dream of the day when we can move to our 40-acre farm and hear nothing but the wind and the cows next door. Until then, we're chronicling our triumphs and mishaps here as we try to garden and preserve on 2 city lots, raise chickens, and learn all those things we should have learned from our grandparents. Welcome to our world - we hope you'll stay awhile!

Scenes from St. Joe (PIC HEAVY)

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

This weekend, J. and I took a little trip up to St. Joseph, Missouri where we hit the Menards for some cheap LED light bulbs, had some lunch, and then decided to take in some sights before heading back home.

For those of you who aren't local, St. Joseph (or "St. Joe" to the locals) is famous for two things:  (1) it was the starting point for the Pony Express and (2) it's where Jesse James died.  I believe the saying is "where the Pony Express started and where Jesse James ended."  The house he died in is now a museum, complete with the bullet hole from the shot that killed him.

St. Joe is located on the Missouri River about 45 minutes north of Kansas City, which makes it a popular place for commuters to the city.  Particularly old house lovers who don't mind commuting, as St. Joe is much older than Kansas City.  It was established in 1843 and was much larger for some time than the fledgling Kansas City.  Many of the original houses are still standing and are some of the most beautiful high Victorian structures in the Midwest.

Which brings us to the purpose of this post....  old house porn!!!

This one was my favorite....

Until we turned the corner and saw this one...

Just look at the detail on the turret.  It's like a wedding cake!

And the carvings on the porch...

And the carved crane and owl details around the stained glass window...

Just beautiful!  And oh-so-high-Victorian.  My guess is that this is one of the earliest houses in the area. I'd love to know the history. 

A little blurry...sorry!
Mixed in with the beautifully restored houses are others that need more TLC.

While some people would run screaming from this, I see nothing but possibility.

Check out the turret on this one....

This is the Whiskey Mansion, which is now a popular bed and breakfast.

And these two "sisters" were sitting side by side...
Sister to the previous house below.  Can you see the similarities?
Now we're getting into the more Italianate style with the house below:

And one more for the road.  Someone's done some good work on this one, but they're in sad need of some expert porch builders.  I think J. and I could make a fortune up here rebuilding these elaborate porches.  

What a neat place, huh? 


  1. I live about 20 miles northwest of St. Joe. I loved your pictures. I am in St. Joe at least once a week, but never really noticed the old houses. Thank you for sharing. Shows me that I need to slow down and enjoy the views. LOL It was on our local news a couple of weeks ago that someone had broken into one of these old empty houses and destroyed and stole parts of the fireplaces, light fixtures and cover plates, etc. It was really sad. I think they caught the culprit, but only got a few of the stolen things back.

  2. I love, love, love these old houses... unfortunately, Keith doesn't... he sees the work and runs screaming!


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