The Worth Block – Before and After

Named for the flamboyant James H. “Jimmy” Worth, the Worth Block was originally the property of the widow, Gertrude Bertz. Ms. Bertz’s ownership extended back to the earlier days of Joplin. We’ll go more into the fascinating background of how Jimmy and Gertrude at a later date. For now, we’ll leave you with this depressing example of the effect of Joplin’s urban renewal. The economic heart of Joplin’s downtown, 4th and Main, which hosted the Connor Hotel, the Keystone, and the Worth Block, will never be the same again. One more reason why it’s so important to preserve what still remains from Joplin’s glorious past for its future.

Worth Block - Joplin, Missouri

The Worth Block circa 1902

And now the present appearance of the northeast corner at 4th and Main.

The park at 4th and Main Street

Little remains that offers evidence of the once busy intersection.

On the right side of the above photograph is the home of the Joplin Globe, which has been at this location since it took over the city’s original YMCA building (the YMCA moved to its present downtown building at that point).  The original building should still be under the modern facade and perhaps someday, it will see the light of day again.


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