When settlers came to what is now Kansas City, Missouri in the mid-1800s, much of the area was full of bluffs. As the appetite for development grew, flatter land was needed and many of these large bluffs were cut down, with the loess of the bluff used as fill around town.
The top photograph is from May 1868 as the area was undergoing cutting. The house was undoubtedly torn down soon after this photo was taken. Another building replaced it by 1890, which can be seen in the bottom photograph. Today, the building houses a law firm on its first floor and lofts on the floor above. You can view the lofts here, the address is 309 Delaware.
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More than you probably ever wanted to know about the rock ledge and bluffs that KC grew from
Source of the 1868 photo.