The Majestic Restaurant and Jazz Club

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According to the Sebree family, there is a “ghostly gang of 16” in this restored building.

 

DESCRIPTION

“A Classic, Kansas City Steakhouse”

The Majestic is a restaurant, bar, and jazz venue described as being “a vibrant steakhouse classic, with an old-school vibe, featuring cocktails & nightly jazz.”

Tom and I visited the Majestic and were wowed coming in the door, after admiring the refurbished original exterior copper façade. It is a totally restored historical place, with turn-of-the-century atmosphere. There is a gorgeous, huge antique bar from New Orleans on the left, and a piano/music station on the right. The tin ceiling, beautiful wood decor and rest of the furniture go along with the historical aura.

Many interesting pictures, paintings, and historic relics can be found on the walls as well. A most impressive work by local artist Jack O’Hara, is a glorious 1983 oil canvas painting of 15 of the Kansas City folks who found fame hanging on the right wall as you walk inside.

As the Ladie’s Room is in the basement, I got to check out the Jazz Club venue located there which brings a lot of business from jazz lovers. This space is both historic and pleasing to the modern patron. I think both the living and the spirit patrons enjoy themselves here. I got the tingly, dizzy feeling I experience when spirits are near when I was in the basement area.

The second floor is a private dining and lounging area, called The Pendergast Club, in honor of Kansas City Bigwig, “Boss Tom” Pendergast. It has a fully stocked bar, comfortable leather seating and unusual Kansas City artifacts. “Customers can schedule a private dining and lounging experience found nowhere else in the city.”

We really enjoyed our dinner here – fantastic meals from a talented chef! On-tap beer was refreshing too.

 

HISTORY

Over a hundred years ago, in the business heart of Kansas City, an entrepreneur James Fitzpatrick with the financial help of town bigwigs Jim and “Boss Tom” Pendergast, built the Fitzpatrick building in the Quality Hill District for a variety of purposes. It was a beautiful, upscale building with all the artistic bells and whistles, such as tin ceiling, etc.

The Fitzpatrick Saloon where men came for a drink was on the first floor, with the customary bordello on one of the upper floors to fulfill the sensual needs of men in town.

James Fitzpatrick had his living quarters upstairs so he could live close to his business. Boss Tom had a second office here as well, which today is home of The Pentagast Club activities mentioned above.

When Prohibition became the law of the land, the activities of the Saloon moved down to the basement, and managed to continue to serve alcohol throughout Prohibition; being protected by Boss Tom who probably knew how to bribe the authorities to look the other way. Patrons would enter the building next door and go through a tunnel that connected to the Fitzpatrick Saloon’s basement Speak-easy.

When the Garment District became a booming industry in the Quality Hill District, the Fitzpatrick Saloon closed down and was sold to a independent garment factory where talented seamstresses worked the sewing machines to produce clothing for everyone. By 1950, the garment company may have found a better building so they moved out of the Fitzpatrick building that was probably a real fixer-upper opportunity needing a boatload of money to renovate and upgrade to 1950 standards.

For 33 years, it was vacant, left to the spirits. In 1983, four Kansas City entrepreneurs, Frank Sebree II, Mary Ann Sebree; local antique dealer & restaurateur, and James B. Nutter, Sr., and Annabelle Nutter; local antique dealers, saw the great bones & treasures of the building and had a vision of what it could be after restoration. So they made the jump to light speed and purchased The Fitzpatrick Saloon Building. These four people in this labor of love cleaned out the dust and debris, and restored this historical building’s treasures, taking care with the painstaking details; making the building a restored beauty at the end of two years.

As the original bars were long gone, they purchased from New Orleans a “terrific 1900, 40-foot long bar from New Orleans, and acquired an 1880 bar for the basement space, soon to be a Jazz Club. The four of them also hired well-known local artist Jack O’Hara to paint an original oil on a canvas mural for the entrance to Fitzpatrick’s called “From Kansas city to… Fame”, presenting 15 people who were successful in the arts that had strong connections to Kansas City. Walt Disney, Count Basie, Charlie Parker, and Ernest Hemingway were a few included.

Once again, it opened for business. Several restaurants tried to make a go of it. However, in 1992, local restaurateur Doug Barnard had the perfect combination that became quite popular; The New Majestic Steakhouse with live Jazz! He named it after a popular steakhouse that once existed on 31st Street and Holmes, but closed in the mid-1970s. This enterprise thrived for years until Barnard ran into some personal issues in 2008, and wanted out of his lease. The Sebrees’ son, Frank 111 and his wife Jolen, bought the Fitzpatrick building. Right after Barnard’s New Majestic Steak House closed in 2009, the new owners started their own Majestic Restaurant and Jazz Club; building on the success of Barnard’s long-established New Majestic Steakhouse, and managing to bring attendance up and build the popularity once more.

Frank and Jolene continued offering fine food and entertainment, maintaining the business’ success. Majestic Restaurant serves “the best dry-aged Kansas City Steaks for lunch and dinner seven days a week along with fantastic chops, fresh seafood, and homemade desserts.”

The huge selection of wine, beer on tap and drinks plus the nightly Jazz Club is the cherry on top for this successful business.

 

HISTORY OF MANIFESTATIONS

When a historic fixer opportunity property is restored to its former glory, spirits who have connections to the structure come back to visit or even stay.

Life and work of a Prostitute has always been risky; both emotionally and physically, and could lead to an early death by suicide, by an attack by a client, by diseases, and by a botched abortion. The Fitzpatrick Saloon had a brothel on the third floor of this building; a common feature for a saloon. Not-so-nice things must of happened there.

As most Prohibition-era Speak-easies were run by the Mafia, deaths resulted from a run-in with the mob enforcer or rival gangster gangs. There was a Speakeasy in the basement where the Jazz Club is now located.

Since this building also was a garment factory, a dedicated employee in spirit form may still be here, trying to make her quota.

Past Owners of businesses may like to visit their old business, especially if they had living quarters upstairs or special place like an office they had here while alive. (It is especially tempting if this special place is named after you!) The first owner, James Fitzpatrick had his living quarters upstairs. “Boss Tom” Pendergast had a second office where the private dining and lounging room, The Pendergast Club, is now located.

Spirits of Past patrons from years back like to visit old watering holes, restaurants, party places and brothels they enjoyed while alive. Former patrons of the Fitzpatrick Saloon, Brothel, Speak-Easy may come to enjoy the current entertainment offered, as much as they can in spirit form, or relive the fun they had in their memories.

Besides being the Fitzpatrick Saloon, this building has been the home of several restaurants with bars that probably had loyal patrons who loved the places while alive.

 

MANIFESTATIONS

Sensitives have felt spirits in the basement area.

The original owners had paranormal personal experiences with the spirits they encountered.

According to the Sebree family, there is a “ghostly gang” in this restored building. It is claimed that sixteen spirits perhaps from the early days call this high class joint their home. While no personal experiences have been shared, the writer of this haunted houses.com story can provide some possible paranormal activity that could take place here.

Apparitions

The restorers could have seen the apparitions, shadows of thankful spirits so happy that their favorite place in this world is being cared for once again.

A spirit or two may have wanted to help with the restoration work.

Spectral Supervisor & Past Employees

They may have felt the presence of a spectral supervisor, (such as Jame Fitzpatrick or the Pendergast brothers) making sure they did things right.

They may have experienced some “help” from spirits of past employees who are not on the payroll.

The Spirit of Boss Tom

He may enjoy the private dining that takes place in his old office.

He may approve of the considerable variety of alcohol in the bar area and may help himself!

Paranormal Pranksters

There may be some spectral jokers who get their chuckles at the expense of the living.

Past Patrons & Prostitutes

Spectral patrons who liked to sit at the bar probably still do so.

Spirits who are attached to the old New Orleans bars may have joined the other original spirits.

Former prostitutes who died here are hopefully enjoying the jazz, perhaps still trying to work at the oldest profession.

STILL HAUNTED?

Probably so. While there has been no hard evidence found that has been made public, the owners of this building have had experiences withe their spectral residents.

 

LOCATION

931 Broadway Blvd,
Kansas City, MO 64105
(816) 221-1888

SOURCES INCLUDE

  • https://www.thepitchkc.com/food-drink/article/20597488/the-new-majestic-restaurant-lives-up-to-its-name-and-historic-location
  • https://www.thepitchkc.com/arts-entertainment/article/20589002/the-top-five-haunted-restaurants
  • http://majestickc.com/about-us/history-of-downtown-kansas-city/
  • http://ourchanginglives.com/shady-history-at-the-majestic-restaurant/
  • http://majestickc.com/about-us/kansas-city-jazz-videos-from-the-jazz-club/
  • https://shsmo.org/about/kansascity/mcp/Worley-1-28-93.pdf

 
Our Haunted Paranormal Stories are Written by Julie Carr

Haunts in Kansas City Haunts in Missouri