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Jesse James Home Museum, Saint Joseph

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History Museum · Museum
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The Jesse James Home Museum is the house in St. Joseph, Missouri where outlaw Jesse James was living and was gunned down on April 3, 1882, by Robert Ford. It is a one-story, Greek Revival style frame dwelling measuring 24 feet, 2 inches, wide and 30 feet, 4 inches, deep.
At the time, the house was located at 1318 Lafayette Street in St. Joseph. In 1939, it was moved to a busier Belt Highway location. In 1977, it was moved to a location directly behind Patee House at 12th and Mitchell in St. Joseph, only two blocks away from its original location, which restored more of its historic context.

The investigation into the shooting death of James was conducted at Patee House Hotel (formerly the World's Hotel). Mrs. James, her two children, and Jesse's mother stayed in Patee House for two nights after Jesse James was killed.

The house has a large bullet hole on the north interior wall. The hole was actually much smaller but over the years, souvenir hunters carved shavings from the hole and enlarged it.

The Jesse James Home contains a number of items owned by Jesse James and his family. In 1995, top forensic scientist Professor James E. Starrs, of George Washington University, conducted an exhumation of the grave of Jesse James to settle persistent controversy about the remains. In February 1996, he announced that DNA tests performed on the remains and compared to the DNA of existing known relatives proved a 99.7% reliability that the body in the grave was that of Jesse James. The museum includes new exhibits based on the 1995 exhumation, including artifacts such as coffin handles, bits of wood, and a pin Jesse James wore in his death photo, as well as numerous photos taken during the exhumation.

The home was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on September 4, 1980. It is a contributing resource to the Patee Town Historic District.
Our Saint Joseph driving holiday planner makes visiting Jesse James Home Museum and other Saint Joseph attractions simple, and helps you make a travel plan personal to you.
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Jesse James Home Museum reviews

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Google
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TripAdvisor
  • The guide was very informative. Experience was good and they have some interesting things to see inside the home. Don't want to spoil the surprises. Be there at least 1/2 hr before closing... 
    The guide was very informative. Experience was good and they have some interesting things to see inside the home. Don't want to spoil the surprises. Be there at least 1/2 hr before closing...  more »
  • There is an audio that tells about how Jesse was killed, & one exhibit shows the artifacts retrieved when his grave was exhumed. The staff on duty can give more information if you ask. 
    There is an audio that tells about how Jesse was killed, & one exhibit shows the artifacts retrieved when his grave was exhumed. The staff on duty can give more information if you ask.  more »
Google
  • Great stop! Just $4 to enter house which is priced right for the size of it. The house was originally way up the hill with no one around it, a perfect view to see anyone approaching his rental, and very private. Can you imagine how on edge he must have always been?! Then to let his guard down one beautiful day...and be shot in the back by his young crony. Excellent friendly & informative docent...we learned so much! Spent about 1 hr here and def saw everything. Check out the tapestry he was straightening (wedding gift from his mom supposedly) & the bullet hole below it. DON'T MISS the bloodstain hole in the floor (others just cruised on by and missed a lot). Jesse's body was buried 3 times. The last time they found all the deteriorated pieces that are laid out in the case....including the bullet he carried in his lung. Very cool! Google & listen to a folk song about the dirty little coward who shot Mr. Howard. That was Jesse using a fictitious name...Mr. Howard...the song is about him! DON'T MISS the amazing Patee Museum next door!!!!!!
  • Pretty cool place. The gentleman that works there had interesting information to add. Cool piece of history and only $4

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