Hôtel de Ville, Paris and St. Louis City Hall

One thing that annoys me about American architectural history and St. Louis architectural history in particular is that it is frequently written by people who have absolutely no background in European architectural history. Case in point, it is “common knowledge” in St. Louis that City Hall is based off of the Hôtel de Ville, the…

End of Summer Odds and Ends

I first would like to invite readers out to my free lecture on the history of the Lemp Brewery tomorrow, at 11:00 AM, September 20, 2022 at the Missouri History Museum. Its architecture was born out of the designs of highly influential architects Edmund Jungenfeld; Theodore Krausch; Widman, Walsh and Boisselier; and Guy Tyler Norton. I will be…

Downtown from the McKinley Bridge

The views of downtown from the McKinley Bridge are also impressive. The vacant Southwestern Bell building can be seen below, with the boarded up windows that were shot out by stray bullets earlier this year clearly visible. The Eagleton Federal Courthouse is to the west. Then there is the iconic Civil Courts building. The Stan…

Looking Out the Windows of the Alverne

It’s hard to believe considering how long suffering the Alverne Building was, that I was able to stand on the top floor recently and deliver a lecture. It’s now renovated into some interesting apartments, including some two-story ones, and the problem with the building having some small windows that couldn’t be altered in order to…

About That Sinkhole

Oh dear! The ground collapsed north of the main post office in downtown a couple of weeks ago. There are many things down there, including the old cellars of the Julius Winkelmeyer Brewery, which dated back to the 1840s (and used to frequently beat Adam Lemp out for first place in the city’s fair every…

Damage to the Spire, Centenary Methodist Church

It’s really sad to see this. I met the pastor and congregation of Centenary Methodist Church several years ago, and even wrote at article in St. Louis Magazine about it. The high winds of early July storm ripped off the steeple, and I don’t know what the status of rebuilding is. There are many churches…

Merchant Laclede Building, Revisited

The Merchant Laclede, or Merchant’s Laclede Building, depending on whom you ask, was another of the historic skyscrapers in the financial district of St. Louis, often forgotten in favor of the more famous Chicago School buildings to the west. It was built in 1886. It’s been simplified over the years, losing its pediment and conical…

Security Building, Revisited Again

I found some photos of the Security Building deep in the St. Louis Patina archives, and I thought they should see the light of day. The standard story always goes is that it’s the last, or one of the last Romanesque Revival skyscrapers in St. Louis before the coming of the innovative Wainwright Building, but…