Branch and Agnes, Hyde Park

Around North St. Louis 012

In the older neighborhoods of St. Louis, such as those east of Jefferson, there are always a few houses from the early Twentieth Century scattered in among the 1870-90’s houses.

Around North St. Louis 013

But every so often, like at Branch and Agnes in the primarily 19th Century neighborhood of Hyde Park, I come across whole blocks of houses that stick out for being decades younger than surrounding blocks.

Around North St. Louis 014

Why? I turned to Sanborm maps and Compton and Dry for insight. Interestingly,the Sanborn map did not offer any insight.

Branch and Agnes\

But possibly, Compton and Dry offers a clue: there are large, possibly rocky outcropping protruding from the ground (note: some street names have changed since the 1870s). Did this prevent development for decades?

Hyde Park Open Land

As an aside, it’s worth noting that there is a sizeable blue collar white population in Hyde Park still. From my observations, they tend to occupy the newer houses like I showed above, while poor African Americans live in the older 19th Century housing stock.

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