Nutterville Stands Out in Westport

Today, this block of Central Street is part of a complex of small offices known as Nutterville. However, from the turn of the century to the 1970s, the area was a residential district.

The block between Archibald and 41st Street and between Central and Baltimore today is part of Nutterville, an area of brightly-painted and carefully landscaped homes that have been converted to business spaces by the James B. Nutter company.

Homes that once stood on the block along the west side of Baltimore Street are gone, for the most part.  But two rows of former residences, along Central and Archibald Streets, offer a colorful glimpse into the early days of Kansas City.

As part of our Uncovering History Project, the Midtown KC Post is examining each block in Midtown. A set of 1940 tax assessment photos is available for many blocks.

Homes in the area date back to the Civil War, including the Nathan Scarritt House at 4038 Central, just across the street.

Small offices on Archibald Street in Nutterville.

James B. Nutter’s mortgage company moved into the area in the mid-1970s, and after they bought some nearby run-down properties, he got the idea to paint them the bright colors often used in Colorado mountain towns.

Archibald Street homes in 1940.
Archibald Street homes in 1940. Historic photos courtesy Kansas City Public Library/Missouri Valley Special Collections.

The Nutter company landscapes the properties and today, they are home to small creative businesses and called “Nutterville” for their distinctive palette.

The slideshow below shows the homes along Central Street and Baltimore as they looked in 1940. Several of the buildings no longer stand, but those that do have not changed much except for their new bright colors.

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 Do you have memories or more details about this block of Midtown? Please share them with our readers.

 Would you like us to focus on your block next week? Send us an email.

 Our book, Kansas City’s Historic Midtown Neighborhoods, is available now. Let us know if you want us to come to your neighborhood association or organization’s meeting to share what we’ve learned about Midtown neighborhood history and tell your members how they can help preserve Midtown history. If you’d like to order the book, email Mary Jo Draper at 


One response to “Nutterville Stands Out in Westport”

  1. Oh yea, that is a variation on my ctmumoe to school back in the day! I usually went north on Holmes, across 18th and through 18th & Vine. Then north on Woodland to Missouri, Lexington, and St. John.I also rode across 36th St. going through Hyde Park. This transect of the city does take you through some KC history. I always thought I had a great commuting route. And I still ride it just for fun since I’ve retired.

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