The Alexander Majors House is one of surviving antebellum houses in the Kansas City area and is on the National Register of Historic Places. Majors built the house in 1856, on a 300-acre farm. It served as both a family home and headquarters for a successful freighting company. Today, Major’s property would span north-south from 75th to 89th, and east-west from Summit to State Line. The house faces west, looking out over what was then Kansas Territory.
The property ran alongside a dirt path leading from West Port Landing to the original Santa Fe Trail. That dirt path is now known as State Line Road. Being an astute business person, Majors constructed his house right on the edge of the United States, enabling him to conduct business on leased property in what was then Kansas Territory. On this leased property Majors had huge corrals, grazing lands, oxen pens, barns, and wagon and blacksmith shops. This allowed him to graze his oxen in Kansas Territory, thus avoiding taxation as livestock was not taxed in the territory.
As Alexander Majors was a slaveholder, it is likely that enslaved people performed a majority of the construction. The Majors house is T-shaped, built of heavy oak timbers and square nails. The home is a modified Greek revival architecture style and features an unusual 2-story recessed porch. Showcasing Majors wealth are 43 windows, containing 533 panes of glass. Glass was very expensive as it was manufactured and shipped from the East.
Originally the house had nine rooms and nine fireplaces—one in each room. There are 27 interior doors and 11 exterior doors; nearly every room has a door to an outside porch or balcony. The floors are virgin white pine—non-existent today. The walls were plaster, made of white lime and hog-hair. The house’s main rooms consisted of an office, parlor, and dining room on the first floor, and three bedrooms on the second floor. The original kitchen was a small lean-to at the back of the house. About 1910, a large bay window on the south expanded the dining room and the bedroom area above. A two-story addition was made to rear giving the house two additional bedrooms and a kitchen, replacing the lean-to.