Oliva Apartments named place in peril


JOPLIN, Mo. — The once dubbed Joplin’s ‘handsomest apartment house in the west,’ is now getting a new title.

The Olivia Apartment Building at 4th and Moffet was recently named one of Missouri’s Places in Peril by the Missouri Alliance for Historic Preservation. The building has vandalism, water damage, and the structure is deteriorating.

It was built back in 1906 by Anton Bendelari — a civil and mining engineer from Canada — who moved to Joplin during the mining boom. He named the building after his mother.

The Olivia was best known for its 5th floor restaurants, marble baseboards, and decorative painting on the ceiling.

Jill Sullivan, Executive of Director of Post Art Library, said, “Well it makes me sad on a personal level because it’s not just about the building, like I said its about the cultural landscape the fabric of our community. Its about the building and all the stories and the people that go along with the building.”

The Missouri Alliance for Historic Preservation hopes being named a Place of Peril in the state will bring awareness to the building, and its importance to the Joplin community.

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