JeffVanderLou North St. Louis Northside Regeneration

Blairmont: 2629 St. Louis Avenue

Part of the Photographic Survey of Blairmont Buildings.

Date of photograph: January 21, 2007.

LOCATION: 2629 St. Louis Avenue; JeffVanderLou; Saint Louis, Missouri

The first block on St. Louis west of Jefferson is fairly barren. There are some homes on the south side, but on the north side there is only this building at the northeast corner of Elliott and St. Louis. It’s a predictable landmark that is so quintessentially a north side building. The side gables, wide front elevation, brick corbelling, cast iron storefront and tall plain chimneys are all typical of the common commercial and residential buildings of the 1860s and 1870s before the local vernacular was heavily laden with Italianate and Second Empire references. Of course, buildings like this are pretty rare on the north side today, especially here between Jefferson and Grand.

This landmark is a welcome marker on my way home from points westward in the city. When I spot this building, I know that home is near and I am back to the older northside where the blocks are shorter and the buildings very old. Seeing that it survived a whole block worth’s of other buildings only strengthens my appreciation of its hardy body.

Will this landmark be a marker for the next generation, or will I be among the last to see it stand?  I hesitate to discover, but know that I must.  ~ Michael R. Allen

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