Joseph Wiley Spurgeon

Joseph Wiley Spurgeon:

(January 17, 1864 – March 23, 1940)

Joseph Spurgeon was widely responsible for building much of Baldwin City, Kansas* and Baker University. He designed and  and built many of the town’s public buildings, businesses, and homes. At the time of his death in 1940, Spurgeon was credited with building the public school, city hall, the United Methodist Church, Taylor Hall and the Rippey Gymnasium (both former buildings on Baker’s campus),  the Delta Tau Delta and Delta Delta Delta greek houses, Case Hall, the gates of Baker University, and several others. He is credited with lending a hand in the construction of every building on the Baker University Campus that was built during his lifetime. Spurgeon was not just a builder, but also a contractor, mechanic, engineer, and father. It is no wonder that his legacy lives on in Baldwin City. This project is dedicated to the residential side of his many constructions. The Spurgeon Notebook in the Baker University Archives collection offers a glimpse of the homes he designed and built for residents of Baldwin City.  Within the pages of this project, you will find images and maps showing the Spurgeon houses then and now.

Spurgeon continues to fascinate local Baldwin City residents, inspiring them to conduct further research into his life. In 2015, Baldwin City created Joseph Spurgeon Park to honor his legacy and contribution to the town.

*If you would like to learn more about Baldwin City, KS and its history here is an excellent “virtual walking tour.”

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