Early Houses, Fox Park and Benton Park West

Old North, Link, Sunset Memorial Park 420

I’ve continued to be interested in the first generation of houses that appeared out Gravois Avenue past Jefferson in the years after the Civil War. They’re often isolated now, sitting amongst the primary period of development in the area in the first decades of the twentieth century.

Old North, Link, Sunset Memorial Park 422

Take this mansard-roofed house, with an accompanying stable of some sorts attached to the back above; what was its original use?

Old North, Link, Sunset Memorial Park 423

I love these small duplexes that cluster around the narrow streets of Benton Park West’s northern fringe.

Old North, Link, Sunset Memorial Park 426

Or this complex of buildings in Fox Park, just north of St. Francis de Sales. They’re abandoned now, but their old age shows.

Old North, Link, Sunset Memorial Park 428

The wood frame house would be one of the earliest houses, while the three story alley houses is old enough to appear in the Compton and Dry View (in the black square below).

Old North, Link, Sunset Memorial Park 430

Unfortunately, because they are decades older than other buildings in these neighborhoods, it seems like these survivors suffer the most.

Old North, Link, Sunset Memorial Park 433

The huge number of sinkholes and other quarries in the area probably delayed the development of the area around Jefferson and Gravois.

Fox Park and Benton Park West


  1. that warehouse in the first picture was the E. Schweigler Soda Water Co. according to the 1909 Sanborn Map, but the building was probably at least 25 years old by then…

    • That thing was for sale FOREVER a while back, and I came very, very close to buying it as a rehab project. I’ve always been fascinated with that property…

  2. Nitpicking, but as I am an OF and retired…
    It is St. Francis de Sales and not St. Frances de Sales. The former is masculine while the latter is feminine.

    OT, but that parish was one that had a small high school that operated until 1974. Other parishes that had their own HS were St. Peters in Kirkwood (Coyle HS / co-ed, but separate classes-closed in 1960), St. Anthony’s in South City (St.Anthony’s HS, girls only-closed in ’63?), and St. John the Baptist off S. Kingshighway (co-ed HS had same name, and lasted until 2008!).

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