Cherokee Street Between Michigan and Minnesota Avenues, North Side

I took a little stroll along Cherokee Street during the annual print sale a couple of weeks ago, and took some photos. I looked at the general area back in January of 2017. I had always wondered what the deal was with this four-family apartment building, and lo and behold, it was the replacement for what had been a very old duplex, owned by Bernard Crickard, constructed when this area was far out in the country.

William Swekosky, Bernard Crickard Residence, 3115 Cherokee Street, Missouri History Museum, N03068

Architecturally, it looks sort of Greek Revival, but it has the form of a Carpenter Gothic house, which I wrote about at St. Louis Magazine back in December of 2016. And as is common, there is a service out the back. Am I correct to call this a duplex? There are two front doors…

William Swekosky, Bernard Crickard Residence, 3115 Cherokee Street, Missouri History Museum, N03072

You can see the house below at the bottom of Pictorial St. Louis, published in 1876. It was a lightly settled area of pastures and other light agricultural uses.

Detail of Plate 62, Compton, Richard J, and Camille N Dry. Pictorial St. Louis, the great metropolis of the Mississippi valley; a topographical survey drawn in perspective A.D. St. Louis, Compton & co, 1876. Map. Library of Congress.

Moving along, we see the “regular” houses we would expect in this area on the western end of Cherokee Street, those building constructed as the streetcars made this area easily accessible to the rest of the city in the early Twentieth Century.

I wonder what happened to the pediment below. One of my neighbor’s pediments was blown over by straight line winds a couple of years ago.

Rain and ice love to destroy pediments! They are not protected on any of their sides, so the weather can permeate them and eat away.

I love these houses; they’re so hard to quantify stylistically.

Then of course we reach this beauty, which is such a perfect example of how you can incorporate residential uses with commercial on the first floor, carefully integrating the residential interior of the block with the commercial edge.

4 Comments Add yours

  1. W. White says:

    It looks more likely that the Crickard House was a single-family residence split into a duplex. It would not have been difficult to replace the side-lighted and transomed front entrance of a center-halled house and transform it into a simplified, double-doored duplex split down the center hall. Of course, it could have originally had two front doors and no center hall, to conserve interior space. I would expect to see broad porches associated with such an arrangement, since you would not want to be exposed to the elements every time you wanted to go from room to room. Though such porches could have been removed before those photographs were taken.

    1. cnaffziger says:

      Ah, good thinking! The doors do seem to fit awkwardly in the space allowed for them. I bet there might very well have been one central door at one point. It would logically fit with the fact there is only one service wing protruding out the back.

  2. ME says:

    It looks like there are two front entrances to the basement from the front also. Possibly extra spaces to rent out to temporary workers working in the area? I’ve heard stories of people renting out basement rooms to railroad workers, clay miners, etc.

    1. cnaffziger says:

      Ah, those basement doors are later additions cut out of windows! Look closely (click on the image for the full size) and you can see the indentations for the original basement window sills (on at least the left side) of the house.

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