Update: See August A. Busch Conservation Area, where munitions were stored during World War II in conjunction with their manufacture at Weldon Springs.
A group of friends and I were in the neighborhood, so we headed out to the old Weldon Spring Munitions Plant, in southwestern St. Charles County. The history of the production of armaments, both conventional and nuclear, is not very well known any more, and the sites that once produced billions of munitions for the U.S. war effort during WW2 are rapidly disappearing.
Weldon Spring sure won’t be forgotten, at least not for several tens of thousands of years! Nuclear waste, dumped throughout the metropolitan area, is a historic, if unpleasant record of St. Louis’s pivotal role in the production of nuclear warheads. The Mallinckrodts were actually pioneers of producing uranium quickly, thus permanently irradiating several buildings on the North Riverfront.
The dome of rock at Weldon Spring, though purely functional in nature, takes on a level of artistry in its inception. Honestly, it is sublime; a purported forty acre mound of rubble, consisting of multiple layers of clay and other linings, and then ton after ton of rock, each about the same size.