Lucille M. Hall Museum
304 N. Main Street, St. John, KS 67576
The Lucille M. Hall Museum showcases the interests of St. John pioneers and their community that “no cyclone shall destroy.” A wide variety of artifacts, keepsakes, and general memorabilia highlight the history of the area over the past 100+ years. The museum was named for Miss Hall, a teacher and world traveler, whose passion was to introduce children to the history of the area, as well as cultures outside their community.
As part of a local Life After School program, elementary students have given museum presentations about some of our famous St. John natives highlighted in the Hall Museum: Larry D. Garcia, former Wichita Fire Chief from 1987 to 2007, serving the city of Wichita as fireman for 50 years; Stephen E. Higgins, former director of the ATF; Larry D. Welch, former FBI special agent and supervisor, the 10th director of the KBI, and author of Beyond Cold Blood: The KBI from Ma Barker to BTK. The museum features excellent biographies and stories of the many St. John citizens who helped build the community, the state, and the nation.
Some of the Life After School students made presentations for the displays featured in the museum: antique commodes, antique toys and sewing notions, and school sports memorabilia. The museum also has a collection of school yearbooks and photos, musical instruments, dishes, arrowheads, military mementos, and quilts. Local residents have donated hundreds of artifacts to the museum inventory.
Situated on St. John’s historic Main Street Square, the museum hosts Kansas Day activities for elementary students. In January 2014, students learned the history of the town square and its Victorian fountain through a vignette in the museum’s educational theater. In January 2013, elementary students sang Kansas pioneer songs, danced the Virginia reel, and churned butter to spread on their homemade bread.
Visiting the museum is like taking a step back into the past. Housed in the 1910 Tudor building, the museum provides insight into the community life over the past century. The rich collection of items reflects the businesses that have existed over the years and the daily life of this rural community. The Tudor building itself originally housed Joseph Tudor’s General Mercantile Store. Through the ages the Tudor building was home to a beer joint, an ice cream bar fountain, a bowling alley, a millinery store, a grocery store, a barber shop, a teen hall, Mcdonald’s Department Store, Skogmos Department Store, and the ASCS office. Today the building is home to law offices, Poppy’s Pizza, and the museum.
The museum has no set hours. If you are interested in a visit, phone numbers of museum board members are listed below and in the window of the museum. Call one of those numbers, and someone will be happy to set a time to share the museum with you.
Vernon or Peggy White – 620-549-6239
Janet Richardson – 620-549-3303
Cibyl Ronen – 620-549-3992
Anna Minnis – 620-549-3420
Bobbett Davis – 620-549-6296
Deb Pound – 620-549-3573
Debby Waddle – 816-223-5893