Barbee Park Trotting Track Joplin
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  1. #1
    Gypsyheart~ Queen of Rust

    Nov 2005
    299 times

    Barbee Park Trotting Track Joplin

    Today's Joplinites can scarcely imagine the thrilling events that once took place in southwest Joplin from 1872 until 1909. The excitement began in 1872 with the construction of a half-mile racing track. By 1876, the Jockey Club and Fair Association had expanded the grounds, which stretched from 17th to 20th Streets between Murphy Avenue and Maiden Lane. In 1879, the sprawling 40-acre site, known as the Joplin Exposition, boasted the racing track, stables, stalls and pens for the animals, plus shelters for agricultural implements and carriages, all of which, according to the 1883 History of Jasper County, Missouri""experienced horsemen pronounce one of the best in the United States." The park also featured a grandstand and a 3000-seat amphitheatre. One of the most spectacular buildings was an octagonal-shaped ""art and floral hall" which was two stories high, topped with an observatory ""commanding a most excellent view of Joplin and the surrounding country." In addition to the horse racing, the Exposition track also presented chariot races, military tournaments, political rallies, and fire department competitions. After the Exposition wound down in the late 1890s, Gilbert Barbee purchased the site, renamed it Barbee Park, and kept the racetrack going for several more years. The legendary ""Gib"" Barbee, who served as the area's Democratic political boss, owned the Joplin Globe newspaper and the infamous House of Lords bar. Barbee hit some hard times in April 1909, when a fire destroyed the grandstand. Fire fighters managed to save the stables and other buildings, but the grandstand was a total loss at $6,500. In 1927, Barbee's son O.H. cleared and leveled the acreage for residential development. He built the Barbee Court addition right on the old race course, preserving the graceful oval of elms trees that once surrounded it. The outline of the racetrack can be traced by looping around from 17th to 19th Streets from Maiden Lane to the alley between Porter and Harlem Avenues. The stone and brick bungalow-type homes in Barbee Court all faced on Harlem, the homestretch of the former racetrack.
    Sources:Gibbons, Charles. Angling in the Archives. Joplin: H. Lang Rogers, 1996.History of Jasper County, Missouri. Des Moines, Iowa: Mills & Co., 1883. BR /Shaner, Dolph. The Story of Joplin. N.Y.: Stratford House, 1948.
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    I go a great distance,while some are considering whether they will start today or tomorrow

  2. #2

    Apr 2007
    Joplin, MO
    Teknetics Turbo, Fisher 1280-X, Aquapulse.
    1 times
    Beach and Shallow Water Hunting

    Re: Barbee Park Trotting Track Joplin

    Have hunted these areas many times over the years and have not much luck in finds.



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