The Katherine Johanna (Foley) Douthat House is only one of two houses in the Murphysburg Historic District built in the Tudor Revival style. It was built in 1932 earning the distinction of “youngest” house in the district.
The property is also unique in that it is named for a woman and not a married couple or in a husband/man’s name. Katherine was widowed in 1921 with three children aged 8, 11 and 14 when her husband, Zahn Lefountain “Toot” Douthat passed away at the young age of 39.
Like most Joplin capitalists and mine operators/owners of their time, the Douthat’s were able to acquire a comfortable income starting in 1916 due to mining operations. They leased their land in the townsite of Douthat, Ottawa County, Oklahoma to the Admiralty Mine. The family moved to Joplin so that the children “…might be given advantages of Joplin schools.” Douthat is now a “ghost town” and part of the Tar Creek Superfund site.