I recently had my picture taken in front of the gates of Washington Terrace. The houses are just as architecturally significant and beautiful as any mansion on the more famous Portland or Westmoreland Places. The color of the brick, combined with the rich black stone creates a harmonious composition just south of the intersection of Union and Delmar.
Built right around the World’s Fair, when the city was just starting to creep out to where the fair was located in western Forest Park, these houses supposedly housed visiting dignitaries to the fair. I don’t know if that’s necessarily true, but it makes for a good story, perhaps.
The combination of old world elements, like the rampant lion and the stark, “Norman Revival” architecture of the gatehouse itself, makes a stern message: the titans of St. Louis industry and politics live here, and you’re not welcome.
Below is an historic photograph, showing the guardhouse before any of the houses have been built. It’s so strange to see nothing but wide open spaces in one of the most intact portions of the city.
The two architects for the gate, Harvey Ellis, designed City Hall, Compton Hill Watertower and other notable buildings, and George Mann designed the recently featured St. Vincent’s Hospital off of the Rock Road.