DeMenil Place, Early October 2021

Things are changing on DeMenil Place! One of the medical marijuana cultivation licenses was awarded to a company that is renovating the old Cherokee Candy Company building, which sits on hallowed ground for me: the southeast quadrant of Block 52, which was bought from the City of St. Louis by Adam Lemp for $970. With the removal of the walls of the east part of the old candy company, you can see a view of the old Lemp Brewery that hasn’t been possible from DeMenil Place for decades. This property south of the t-bone alley was known as Lemp’s Cave.

Charles Ferdinand Wimar, American (born Germany), 1828-1862; The Adam Lemp Brewery, Saint Louis, 1859, 1859; oil on canvas; 35 X 54 1/8 inches; Saint Louis Art Museum, Given by Marion Lemp Hawes, Ann Konta Brewer, and Phyllis Konta Olivieri in memory of William J. Lemp, 690:1949.

Of course, back in the 1850s, this is the view you would have seen from up on what was once Second Carondelet Avenue, then 13th Street (which was a sort of private street for the Lemps and their friends and family) and then finally today it is named after their one French American neighbor, the DeMenils.

The house on the left below was owned by Frederick Jacoby, the business partner of Jacob Feickert, the father-in-law of William J. Lemp, Sr. before it was owned by Edward Jacoby, who was related to the family as well. We looked at his grave recently in Bellefontaine Cemetery. His wife Laura Amanda was temporarily buried in the Adam Lemp plot.

And I think I finally figured out the weird composition of this famous photo that shows only the northern half of the Adam Lemp Villa: Louise Bauer Lemp bought the Jacoby-Hoppe House and rented out it out later, so perhaps this is merely showing her real estate holdings. Ferdinand Foerg, the stepson of Henry Foerg and originally the son of John William Kaeckell, one of two original business partners of Adam Lemp, died in the Jacoby-Hoppe House of tuberculosis. They must have been letting him stay there while he was sick because he had been living elsewhere earlier in his life.

Adam Lemp Residence, 13th and Cherokee, N04071, Missouri History Museum

The house has an amazing cold storage subbasement that is deep below the house, which was for the storage of perishables. It is not related to the nearby caves.

So about these four-families–they were built on the grounds of the first Adam Lemp house and beer garden, which later became a Second Empire house owned by various famous St. Louisans. You can actually still see the curb cut in the sidewalk for the carriageway. The property was huge and stretched all the way over to 18th Street, formerly Lux. It was finally subdivided in the early Twentieth Century and the alley cut through, hence the later style and more middle class housing instead of mid-Nineteenth Century mansions.

To the east is St. Agatha’s; I have evidence that some of the Lemp in-laws might have been Roman Catholic instead of primarily Lutheran and they probably attended the earlier church that was later demolished for the interstate.

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