St. James A.M.E. Church

516 N. Street, Cape Girardeau, Missouri


St. James A.M.E Church

Photo posted to Wikipedia by user Skye Marthaler

License: Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike (CC BY-SA)

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Construction History:

1868: Land purchased from Henry Filbrun (sometimes Filburn)

1875: St. James AME Church built by Rev. S. Rice

1885: Church enlarged, possible rear extension, possibly rear door cut into north façade, new parsonage constructed.

1892: Remodeled, tower added, under Rev. Chas. Hunter

ca. 1900 dwelling (parsonage?) appears on Sanborn Fire Insurance Map

1910-15: Choir loft, elevated floor and concrete steps added

1926: Remodel, basement dug, belfry and steeple roof replaced, stucco added to brick

1936: Church redecorated.

Post 1959: parsonage demolished to make parking lot for church

1959-1961: Choir assembly room, pastor’s study area and vestibule added

1978: Basement remodeled.

1990s: stain-glass windows replaced due to vandalism.

St. James AME Church, 516 North Street, Cape Girardeau, Missouri, is a one story, stucco-covered brick building with a rectangular plan and a front facing gable. Built in 1875, the church is located in a residential district that was once an independent African-American community located just north of Cape Girardeau’s then city limits. The front façade is divided into three bays with a center tower believed to have been added as part of a major rebuilding project that occurred in 1892. The square tower has wide overhanging boxed eaves, a centered round window, a carved stone panel indicating dates of construction and alteration, and a pyramidal roof. The building sits on a raised basement dug in 1926 and outlined by a thick concrete wall topped by a molded water table. A full flight of stairs leads up from the street to a centered recessed arched entryway flanked by windows set in tall, narrow, rounded-arch openings. With the exception of the replacement of some windows in the 1990s, the building retains integrity and is largely unaltered from its historic appearance as of ca. 1926.

Posted to the NRHP 1-15-2014

Update Log 

  • August 14, 2014: Added by Dave King