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Cliff Drive, Spring
Cliff Drive, Spring
TitleCliff Drive, Spring
DescriptionPostcard of the Spring on Cliff Drive
Historical ArticlePictured on many of the first published postcards of Kansas City is the old Cliff Drive Spring on Cliff Drive. Cliff Drive, opened in 1900, winds for six and half miles along the south bluff of the Missouri River, from Paseo to Belmont. A stream of visitors, the first ones by horse and buggy and on foot came regularly to drink and take home a jug of the pure water.

The spring originally served the pioneer Scarritt family, in their log cabin high on the hillside above. The Scarritts kept their butter and milk in the cool waters. The property was acquired by the city from the Scarritt estate in 1899. The spring was restored and beautified in 1959.

The quiet spot on the limestone cliff, once the home of wild things, became a showplace for Kansas Citians at the turn of the century. Postcards in profusion were published--winter scenes with a snow-covered area, a lone horse and buggy driver, early automobiles stopping by. One postcard shows a caravan of tourist buses stopping to have a cool drink and view the broad Missouri River valley below.

The spring was closed in 1962 because of water contamination.

Recently the scallop-shell fountain was unearthed by Central Contracting Co. workers, who are erecting a $285,000 waterfall, which will cover the fountain.

The postcard, published in color by Hall Brothers, shows the shell motif. It was mailed in 1927 to Mrs. L.W. Allen, 17 Radcliff Road, Melrose, Massachusetts, by Reid, who wrote: Dear Mother: This city is indeed fairyland. Beautiful beyond description. Have heard much of K.C. but never learned of its real appearance. Stopping with friends of the Falkenraths. The lady directed us on a 38-mile drive through about one-third of the city's boulevard system. The spring is mineral water. Love, Reid.

Kansas City Times
August 25, 1989

AuthorRay, Mrs. Sam (Mildred)
Item TypePostcard
CollectionMrs. Sam Ray Postcard Collection (SC58)
See finding aid: http://localhistory.kclibrary.org/u?/Local,36981
Local SubjectCliff Drive
Digital FormatJPEG
RepositoryMissouri Valley Special Collections, Kansas City Public Library, Kansas City, Missouri
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