Springfield, MO – Dating back to the 1920’s motor courts were once available on almost every corner of Kearney Street and Glenstone Avenue.
While most have been razed or covered, John Sellars of the History Museum on the Square said traces of the Lurvey’s Court still remains.
“There are few examples left like that one, most of them have been torn down or covered over, re-done in some way to make them look more modern,” said Sellars.
However, Springfield city officials deemed the structure a safety hazard and will soon have it demolished.
“Those structures do meet our definition for a dangerous building, according to our ordinance,” said Director of Building Development Services Harlan Hill. “They are open and vacant and there has been evidence of vagrants and homeless utilizing those structures.”
Sellars said while this is a loss to Springfield history he understands the city’s position and responsibility to do the right thing.
“It’s a loss of history to see them come down,” said Sellars. “But sadly, it’s a lack of forethought, they have been allowed to deteriorate over a multitude of years.”
Back in 1928, motel owners Burt and Irene Lurvey moved their cabins to Springfield.
Sellars said sadly most travelers are unaware of the history and tie our area has to Route 66.
“You can’t diminish Springfield as a source of history of Route 66,” said Sellars. “The telegram naming the highway came from here in Springfield.”
Sellars said the museum’s new location will have a gallery dedicated to Route 66.