Austin Allen looked to the Gothic Revival style for inspiration in this $60,000 masterpiece,
which is about $1,800,000 today. Appropriately enough, elements of this style—the pointed
arches, buttresses, and spires—all symbolize heavenward movement.
Rich and poor, Catholics and Protestants enthusiastically contributed to the effort of building
Joplin’s first Roman Catholic church.
The rough-faced Carthage limestone is laid in regular courses of alternating wide and narrow
rows. A steel frame supports the steeply pitched slate roof and vaulted ceiling; therefore, the
wall buttresses are merely decorative. The primary facade has three arched entry ways. The
largest, in the center, features a beautiful rose window with a cross-topped spire above it. Finials
arise from each corner of the facade towers.
The Joplin Daily Globe published a full-page spread on Sunday, November 24, 1907 stating the
edifice “was regarded as the handsomest structure within the limits of the town of Joplin and was
pointed to with pride by every loyal citizen.”