The Picher name has long been associated with Joplin’s mining history. In 1875, Judge Oliver Hazard “O.H.” Picher (formerly 204 S. Moffet) and his brother William (421 S. Sergeant) organized the Picher Lead and Zinc Co. and in 1887 acquired the Lone Elm Mining and Smelting Company. Judge Picher’s son, Oliver Shepard Picher, succeeded his father as president of the company in 1909. The company merged with Eagle Lead in 1916 and today is known as Eagle-Picher Co. In 1904, Oliver married Emily Stanton.
The interior of the house is the picture of elegance with high wainscoting, stained glass windows, crystal chandeliers, ten-foot vaulted ceilings, six fireplaces, servant’s dumbwaiter and a grand staircase. The exterior also features a colonnaded porch, modillions, Roman Doric columns and more. The windows vary from symmetrical bays, angled bays, tripartite and fanlight.
Built in 1904, Oliver S. Picher’s stately Colonial Adam style home features an entry portico and side porches. The portico’s smooth Roman Doric columns support a balustraded balconet and the ceiling is the traditional color, sky blue. It was a custom of the day to paint the porch ceiling blue to mimic the sky and thus keep birds and wasps from building their nests there.