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Alley House Collapse, Old North

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I realize that by posting these pictures, I am giving the wrong impression about the overall state of rehabbing and development that is making Old North St. Louis one of the most exciting neighborhoods in the region. But that being said, there is a certain captivating aspect of how this humble, wood frame alley house collapsed recently. It brings up the usual questions: why is it here? Who lived here? Why did it finally collapse? Just how dense of a neighborhood must this area have been to make it desirable to live in an alley house? Unfortunately, many of these questions might now never be answered.

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4 Comments

  1. Very interesting to see the details of what used to be the interior of this building, specifically the good-luck horseshoe, and the contents of the cabinets on the walls. It looks like there were some engine belts and jars of something stacked up. Every one of these old houses has/had a story to tell, sure would be interesting to be able to know them.

    • At the time I started working for Old North St. Louis Restoration Group, in 2003, a man everyone knew as “Bud” owned this building and the house in front of it, where he lived. Bud had lived in the neighborhood his entire life, and his family had been in Old North since the Lincoln administration. Unfortunately, after Bud died, his relatives sold to buyers who didn’t have capacity or commitment to maintain the property and who later abandoned it to the city after years of neglect.
      The alley house & the house in front of it facing the street now are available for purchase from LRA.

  2. It’s interesting to note that this building and the front building are owned by the LRA. The building directly to the north, which is in quite good condition overall (though a few windows are sitting open), is owned by Paul McKee.

    • Hmm, wasn’t he supposed to have sold his Old North holdings by now?

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