Category Archives: Metro East

Surveying Edwardsville’s Historic Leclaire Neighborhood

by Laura Jablonski Edwardsville’s Leclaire neighborhood began in 1890 as a collaborative living experiment and soon became a model of sustained working class success. St. Louis manufacturer N.O. Nelson built his factories in the Leclaire area, constructing quaint cottages and … Continue reading

Posted in Edwardsville, Illinois, Metro East, National Register, PRO Projects | Leave a comment

The Mid-Century Modernism of Marcel Boulicault

by Michael R. Allen St. Louis architect Marcel Boulicault’s name probably is unfamiliar to you, but a few of his works will draw an “ah ha!” or two. Boulicault is a designer whose contributions to Modern architecture in St. Louis … Continue reading

Posted in Architects, JeffVanderLou, Metro East, Mid-Century Modern, Missouri, North St. Louis, Pruitt Igoe, South St. Louis, Southwest Garden, Wellston | 3 Comments

Traces of Route 66 on Chain of Rocks Road

by Michael R. Allen One of the St. Louis sections of the historic Route 66 is the two-lane Chain of Rocks Road in Madison County, Illinois.  Between Highway 157 at the west and Highway 203 at the east, passing through … Continue reading

Posted in Metro East, Mid-Century Modern, Neon, Theaters | 1 Comment

Bert’s Chuck Wagon in Collinsville to Fall for Highway Widening

by Michael R. Allen The Madison County Journal reports that Collinsville mid-century landmark Bert’s Chuck Wagon Bar-B-Q (see “Heavenly Bar-B-Q” will be demolished soon for widening of Illinois Highway 159. Bert’s Chuck Wagon will relocate to a nearby location on … Continue reading

Posted in Collinsville, Illinois, Metro East, Mid-Century Modern, Signs | 4 Comments

Shiloh House With a Cool Brick Chimney

by Michael R. Allen Suburban place-making can be difficult when builders rely on the build-by-the-material approach through which home designs are derived from dimensions of common materials. That’s why we see so many woefully under-fenestrated tract houses, with wide rear … Continue reading

Posted in Housing, Metro East | 2 Comments

North End of Venice

by Michael R. Allen If you have not read the Riverfront Times cover story “Meltdown in Venice” by Keegan Hamilton, please do so. The photograph above shows one of the houses in the very north end of Venice whose residents … Continue reading

Posted in Industrial Buildings, Metro East, Venice, Illinois | Leave a comment

East St. Louis Videos on New Geography

by Michael R. Allen Last month, New Geography uploaded the third of a three-part video series on East St. Louis. Alex Lotz created the videos, which started with a whirlwind tour that I gave him and St. Louis University history … Continue reading

Posted in East St. Louis, Illinois, Metro East | Leave a comment


by Michael R. Allen The Fantasyland on Illinois Route 3 in Brooklyn once held two strip club stages, many video viewing rooms and a “health spa.” In a small city whose center seems to have a church on every corner … Continue reading

Posted in Abandonment, Illinois, Metro East | Leave a comment

Behind the Scenes Tour at the Conservatory

by Michael R. Allen St. Louis Building Arts Foundation president Larry Giles welcomes guests to the Conservatory. Amid unusually pleasant weather, over 100 people attended yesterday’s happy hour and tour at the St. Louis Building Arts Foundation Conservatory in Sauget, … Continue reading

Posted in Historic Preservation, Metro East, Salvage | Leave a comment

Edwardsville Residents Rally for Buildings Housing Small Businesses

by Michael R. Allen My coverage is a little late, but I wanted to give a shout out to the 50 people who demonstrated against demolition of historic commercial buildings last Friday in downtown Edwardsville. The Belleville News-Democrat (perhaps the … Continue reading

Posted in Edwardsville, Illinois, Historic Preservation, Metro East, Planning | Leave a comment