The front (south) view of the Mission Hills mansion has changed little over the years. Facing south, it proves an inspiring panorama of the Turkey Creek valley.
The mansion was built in approximately 1920 by Lucius P. “Buck” Buchanan, a wealthy mining developer who was instrument in the founding of the Joplin stockyards. Built in a Spanish motif at a time when this architectural style was in vogue, Buchanan’s inspiration was reportedly a house he saw in Puerto Rico. The house, with a stucco facade and red-tile roof, has eleven rooms and many novel features, including a 62-foot tunnel (nowlargely unused) that connects the basement with the well room.
Totally remodeled only several years ago, the Mansion remains a hub for University activities. It connects directly with the Ralph L. Gray Alumni Center.