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J.C. Nichols Investment Company covenant book

 Collection — Folder: 1
Call Number: RH MS P976


Covenant book for various neighborhoods and cities developed by the J.C. Nichols Investment Company in the Kansas City, Missouri area. Includes details on the following properties: Armour Fields, Bowling Green, Country Club District, Crestwood, Durkee, Greenway Fields, Hampstead Gardens, La Salona, Meyer Circle, Mission Hills, Rockhill Heights, Rockhill Park, Romanelli Gardens, South Country Side, Southwood, Stratford Gardens, Sunset Hill, Westwood Hills, Westwood Park, and Wornall Homestead. The book outlines geographical features of the neighborhood; requirements regarding residence costs and property maintenance; contract declarations by home associations for various neighborhoods; legal ordinances and responsibilities required of the J.C. Nichols Investment Company and the City; and deed restrictions, including restrictions to ownership based on race.


  • Creation: November 1922


Conditions Governing Access

No access restrictions.

Conditions Governing Use

Spencer Library staff may determine use restrictions dependent on the physical condition of manuscript materials.

Biography of Jesse Clyde Nichols (1880-1950)

J. C. Nichols was a major real estate developer and city planner responsible for the development of over 50 residential neighborhoods and real estate ventures in the Kansas City area from the early 1900s into the 1940s, including the Country Club residential district and the Country Club Plaza.

Nichols is also often credited with having influenced many other neighborhood developments across the United States through his company's popularization of the use of restrictive covenants and homeowners associations to control residential development and maintain property values. Restrictive covenants, also known as deed restrictions, were used to stipulate neighborhood development and aesthetical requirements such as building materials, cost of home construction, land usage, housing design, and property maintenance, as well as deny residential ownership or occupancy on the basis of race. This legacy of utilizing practices of racial redlining and segregation has had immeasurable effects on the racial and ethnic distribution of surburan and metropolitan-area residents even after the Supreme Court ruling Shelley v. Kraemer in 1948 made restrictive covenants on the basis of race unenforceable.

With the J. C. Nichols Investment Company's advocation of restrictive covenants, Nichols also advocated for green spaces, tree-lined curved streets, and other landscape architecture techniques to increase and maintain property values and create a picturesque ideal that many still associate with suburbia in present day.


1 folder : Item has loose cover - handle with care. ; Folder measures 22x37 cm.

Language of Materials


Physical Location

RH MS P976

Guide to the J.C. Nichols Investment Company Collection
J.C. Nichols Investment Company covenant book
Finding aid prepared by cmp, 2021. Finding aid encoded by cmp 2021.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Finding aid written in English.
Finding aid permalink
Preferred citation
J.C. Nichols Investment Company covenant book, RH MS P976, Kenneth Spencer Research Library, University of Kansas.

Repository Details

Part of the University of Kansas. Kenneth Spencer Research Library Repository

1450 Poplar Lane
Lawrence KS 66045-7616 United States