Locations of the Kansas City Veterinary College

The First Location: 15th and Grand Avenue (1891-1892)

The KCVC was incorporated under the laws of the State of Missouri, July 29, 1891 (Lee 1956). The college began operation in October 1891 in two rented rooms in the Schutte Building, a merchandise store on the northeast corner of 15th and Grand Avenue in Kansas City, Missouri. The College was under the management of a Board of Directors consisting of Dr. Frank L. De Wolf, President; Dr. James B. Black, Vice President; Dr. Junius H. Wattles, Treasurer; and Dr. Harvey A. Wattles, Secretary. The faculty consisted of 14 instructors and the three students attended one term of six months to be eligible to receive the degree of Doctor of Veterinary Science. The course of instruction was mostly lectures, but the students had access to clinical practice, limited dissection, and laboratory demonstrations. The subjects offered were anatomy, microscopy, histology, physiology, bacteriology, hygiene, theory and practice, obstetrics, clinical medicine, lameness, and shoeing.

The Second Location: 310 East 12th Street (1892-1896)

During the summer of 1892, the college moved to a new site, a remodeled residence at 310 East 12th Street in Kansas City, Missouri. This new site offered better classrooms and laboratories and a larger clinic and hospital facilities. Dr. Robert C. Moore joined the faculty in 1892 to lecture on castrating and spaying. In 1893, the faculty was augmented by the addition of several local veterinarians and physicians. They were Dr. Charles J. Sihler, Inspector in Charge of the U. S. Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI) in Kansas City; Dr. Sesco Stewart, Inspector in Charge of the Bureau’s microscopic inspection of pork for trichina; Dr. Isadore J. Wolf, a successful physician in Kansas City; Dr. Sidney L. Hunter, a U.S. Army veterinarian stationed at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas; and Dr. Flavel B. Tiffany, an eye specialist of Kansas City. The requirement for graduation was changed from one to two terms of six months each with an optional third term without fee.

The Third Location: 1404-06 Holmes Street (1896-1903)

At the close of the 1895 term, there were 24 graduates, an average of four per year. There was disagreement among the stockholders and the student body was not satisfied. A group of faculty members led by Dr. Sihler acquired the stock of the corporation and the college was reorganized under a Board of Directors comprising: Dr. Charles J. Sihler, President; Dr. Isadore J. Wolf, Vice-President; Dr. Sesco Stewart, Secretary-Treasurer and Dean; Dr. Silas L. Brookings; Dr. Benjamin F. Kaupp; Dr. William C. Barth; and Dr. Thomas A. Bray. In July 1896, the college moved into a two-story building at 1404-6 Holmes Street which had been remodeled and equipped for classrooms, laboratories, a hospital and a clinic. In order to provide more scientific training and to improve the standing of the graduates, the directors inaugurated a three year graded course of study.

Fourth Location: 1336 East Fifteenth Street (1903-1918)

In 1898, Dr. Robert C. Moore was elected president of the College. The College grew rapidly and in 1902 purchased ground and erected a large two-story brick structure in 1903 at 1336 East Fifteenth Street. The first floor housed offices, library, pharmacy, college room, the clinic wards of the hospital and a large clinic amphitheater. On the second floor were classrooms, a large museum, microscopic laboratory and wards for small animals.

The College eventually comprised three modern buildings at the corner of 15th Street and Lydia Avenue. When the Main building was completed in 1903, the college officers thought it would be large enough to provide for all future needs. By 1904, the KCVC had a student body of more than 200 students. The increasing enrollment necessitated the erection of a second building in 1907, designated the Annex, to provide adequate clinical laboratory space. It contained wards for large animals, a judging arena, a well-equipped chemical laboratory a large anatomy laboratory, and an amphitheater seating 500 people, (Lee 1956, Whitney 1908).

The course of study in 1904 included three six months’ terms or two and one half years of study. Classes started in the middle of September and continued through the middle of March. The students often worked for veterinarians or on their own from March until September. The faculty was often engaged in private practice during that time as well. The College also offered a post graduate course in 1904 from Jan 3 to Feb 28; the tuition was $40.00.

To supply yet larger and better classrooms, and to provide for the physical and social well being of a steadily increasing number of students, the third and largest of the buildings, the Auditorium, was completed in 1910. In this building there were four large classrooms, a spacious library, a splendid gymnasium, a large hall for general assemblies and social gatherings, offices for instructors, quarters for the YMCA, a room for students’ supplies, a biologic laboratory, as well as a department for heating and lighting equipment. The College grounds, buildings and equipment entailed an expenditure of more than $250,000.