Originally a rough-and-tumble speakeasy located at 9th and State Line roads across from the sprawling Armour & Company meat packing facility, the Antlers Club catered to the workers streaming in and out of the slaughterhouse with gambling, strippers, and boxing matches.
In 1937, the owners opened a sleek ballroom upstairs that could accommodate 1,000 dancers. During hot Kansas City summer nights, dance fans flocked to the Antlers Club to Lindy Hop to hot jazz and cool off with the club’s air conditioning system, which drew cool air from a clear spring well located 100 feet below the club. Radio station KXBY broadcast nightly from the Antlers.
The Antlers showcased top local bands including Buster Smith and Tommy Douglas. Charlie Parker, who played with both bands, often participated in the late-night jam sessions at the Antlers. In 1939, a federal investigation identified the Antlers as part of a gambling ring headed up by local mobster Charlie “The Wop” Carrollo. After that investigation, the Antlers faded from the scene.
1717 W 9th Street
Kansas City, MO 64101