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Patee House

St. Joseph, Missouri
County of Buchanan.
12th and Penn Streets
National Register Number: 66000414
Resource type: Building.
Property type: Domestic - hotel. The threat level was Threatened in
Congressional District: MO-6 Certified Local Government: YES
This NHL offers public access.
Please contact the NHL directly for visitor information.
Current use/information: Museum.

Statement of Significance (as of designation - November 5, 1961):
Completed in 1858, this huge structure was one of the best-known hotels west of the Mississippi in the mid-19th century. It served as the eastern terminus of the Pony Express; the cannon which inaugurated the opening of the Express was fired in front of this building on April 3, 1860.

Extreme weather, including a heavy ice storm in December, along with many snowstorms, have caused a major portion of our roof to deteriorate, causing serious leaks and threatening our artifact storage areas on the upper floors. At the same time, wood windows, trim, and cornices also took a hit, and the 200-plus windows in the Patee House need to be reglazed and painted. Cost estimates for the roof repairs and wood painting project total $300,000. We have applied for a "Save America's Treasures" grant, but would be stressed to fund our share of the cost. We still operate our museums without any tax support. Our neighborhood continues to deteriorate since the nearby Mead Tablet Factory moved south to Mexico. The neighborhood, never pristine, has deteriorated, especially since the opening of Triumph Foods hog processor in St. Joseph. The neighborhood bank and two restaurants that served tourists are now closed. We are experiencing graffiti, vandalism, and recently a large plate glass window was broken in our carousel addition.

Patee House National Historical Landmark is now celebrating its 150th year, and continues to draw visitors from all over the world. It was recently named by True West Magazine as one of the Top Ten Western Museums. We currently have a $10,000 "Tourism Cares" Grant for roof over porch (spring), and have applied for $300,000 "Save America's Treasure (see above).

Comments and questions about the database may be directed to NHL_info@nps.gov