Trip Ideas: Step Back in Time
From Civil War sites to beautiful and stately homes, there are a variety of historic sites to see in Cape Girardeau. Take some time to learn more about this Mississippi River city and its importance in Missouri history.
Morning
Walk the grounds of this Civil War fort, which was one of four built under the direction of Lt. John Wesley Powell. Powell later gained fame as the explorer of the Grand Canyon. Of the four earthen forts during the summer of 1861, only Fort D remains.
920 Fort St., Cape Girardeau MO 63701, 800-777-0068
Hours: Sunrise-sunset
Continue your journey around Cape by visiting another site of Civil War significance, the Common Pleas Courthouse. Completed in 1854, the courthouse has a dungeon area that was used to jail southern sympathizers and perhaps Confederate soldiers. This attraction has an audio tour that can be accessed on-site with your cell phone.
44 N. Lorimier, Cape Girardeau MO 63701, 573-335-1631
Hours: 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
Afternoon
The menu includes hickory-smoked barbecue (a house specialty); chicken; pork; catfish; and other choices. The building is one of the oldest standing structures west of the Mississippi River; it dates to the 1830s. Located on the riverfront, this building is thought to have been used as General Grant's headquarters during the Civil War; it accommodated bootleggers during prohibition.
19 N. Water St., Cape Girardeau MO 63701, 573-334-0954
Hours: Sun.-Thur., 11 a.m.-9 p.m.; Fri.-Sun., 11 a.m.-10 p.m.
The Glenn House was built in 1883 for Lulu Deane and her husband, David A. Glenn, a Cape Girardeau merchant and banker. They occupied the home until 1915. Restored rooms depict life, circa 1900, when the house was remodeled. Visit the website for group and special tour information, plus details on holiday-season tours.
325 S. Spanish St., Cape Girardeau MO 63703, 573-335-1631
Hours: May-October: Sat.-Sun., 1 p.m.-4 p.m.
Built in 1853; the English Gothic Revival architecture is rare. Contains more than 100 medieval, plaster masks portraying characters from the Miracle and Mystery plays. The pews and altars are original. This attraction has an audio tour that you can dial into from your cell phone from the church site.

The public is invited to tour Old St. Vincent's Church on Saturdays from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., from the first of May through the end of September. Mass is celebrated every Sunday at 10:00 a.m. While admission is free, donations are appreciated and will be used to preserve Old St. Vincent's for future generations.

 

131 South Main Street, Cape Girardeau MO 63701, 573-335-1631
Hours: Saturday, 1 p.m.-4 p.m.
Take an afternoon drive (about 25 minutes) west of Cape to see the the four-story, stone and brick water-powered mill, which dates to around 1867. The 140-foot Burfordville Covered Bridge crosses the Whitewater River that powers the mill. Off of Route 34 onto Route OO to Route HH.
113 Bollinger Mill Road, Burfordville MO 63739, 573-243-4591
Hours: Office: Mon.-Fri., 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Evening
After a day "stepping back in time," enjoy one of the newest and most modern attractions in Cape Girardeau. The 42,000 square feet of gaming space at Isle Casino Cape Girardeau offers more than 980 slot machines and 28 table games.
777 N. Main St., Cape Girardeau MO 63701, 573-730-7500
Hours: Open 24 hours
Before the sun goes down, see one of the most famous sites in Cape. The 1,100-foot-long Mississippi River Tales Mural features 24 panels depicting scenes from the city's history, along with interpretive signage. The mural adorns the floodwall in downtown Cape Girardeau. This attraction has an audio tour; dial into it with your cell phone from the site.
100 Broadway, Cape Girardeau MO 63701, 573-335-1631
Hours: 24 hours