Eliot School, Hyde Park

Update: In late 2019 (third photo down), the school sits empty above much as it did in September of 2017, windows open and the interior exposed to the elements. There is no sign of redevelopment in the future. See Monroe School, another design from around the same time period, here.

Sitting empty, the Eliot School never saw the rehabbing that its neighbor, Irving School received several years ago.  As such, it sits empty.

But it is a magnificent building, featuring strong, stout architecture with Italianate but also Romanesque influences.  As such, it is that typical, non-selfconscious architecture that pervades Nineteenth Century America.

33 Comments Add yours

  1. Joyce Pharriss says:

    I read recently while doing an internet search that Eliot School was built in 1898, designed by William B. Ittner, an architect and commission of school buildings, and that it was the first school in the city to have indoor plumbing. I don’t recall any of our teachers telling us about its history, but I knew the school had already been in existence long before my classmates and I arrived at its doors. My uncles and father, who lived with my grandparents in a two-family flat on Farragut near Blair Ave, all attended Eliot, from around 1902 to 1915, after which they all went on to Yeatman High School (later Central High School). I attended Eliot from 3rd grade on, graduating with the 8th grade class of 1953, and then, like most of my class, went on to Central High.

    All the kids in the surrounding neighborhood went to Eliot or to Holy Trinity or Holy Name School in the ’40’s and 50’s. We all walked to school, sometimes walked home at lunch time, walked back, then walked home after school. Living on Penrose near Blair, I didn’t have to walk far–just a few blocks. Every June, Eliot School students celebrated the end of the school year with a parade through the neighborhood, followed by a picnic and day of fun at the big amusement park, Forest Park Highlands.

    I read that the building was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1993. Apparently, that didn’t
    guarantee that it would be rehabbed or even maintained. One of your photo shows a For Sale sign in front of the building. I hope you’ll let us know what happens next.

    1. Chris Naffziger says:

      Interesting, that is a very early example of his architecture then. He changes soon after that to a more English-influenced style.

      1. Patricia Malta Martin says:

        So many memories of the neighborhood and Eliot School. My mother and 3 of my uncles went to Eliot. Miss Hagan was a young teacher when they were there. She was my eighth grade teacher and when I was a senior in high school I did my Cadet teaching there.

        1. Scott e manno says:

          Hi, I remember when i went to that beautiful school back in the middle 60`s.I was 9 yrs old when i got hit by a car,anybody remember that?..lol…it`s funny now but back then it was not good.Drop me a line in my email if you remember.

        2. Juanita Caviness says:

          Mrs Hagen was my fathers teacher as well as my older
          sister. She retired the year before I entered 8th grade. The replacement forher in room #2 was a Mr. Anderson and the replacement for room #1 was a Mr. Leonard. I would like to buy and restore Eliot Sunool as I still remember the entire
          school in her glory days. I was an adventuresome child. I explored every place that wasn’t
          locked from -the attic to the furnace roam. Mostly I was looking for a warm place to hide during recess and the times we spent. outside in the winter.
          after lunch outsid.
          I lived on the
          Grove St. s ide of the
          school but I had to walk all the way around to the other or girls side to get in line to go inside led by the teacher. Ahhh Memories.

          1. Juanita Caviness says:

            Juanita Caviness is my married
            name. Iwas Juanita Fischbach way back then. Class of 67 Ithink.
            I remain in contact with
            Diane Potts and Rita May field.
            Contact me if you have information on who to
            contact for the purchasing of
            Eliot School, or if you are interested in forming a group of interested parties to purchase Eliot SchooI at my text #,
            314-799-0477.
            We, alI of us together, may be able to afford to do the job and restore this beautiful old memory filled School.

    2. Angie says:

      I lived at 1507 Penrose, next door to the church on the corner of Penrose and Blair, from 1965 until 1969. I have such good memories of walking to Eliot and how beautiful the neighborhood was. Many mothers maintained pretty rose gardens, and I thought I was dreaming about walking home for lunch from time to time…I assume we had to be back by a certain time. I remember the parades at the end of school. I also remember the custodians wore gray coveralls with their names embroidered on the front. They took very good care of our school, keeping the floors glistening, grass cut, etc. I remember, it seems like there was a sundial in the front, with beautiful red cannas planted around it. There was a busy y-street in front and our crossing guard, Grace, wore a blue uniform with white gloves and crossed us in the morning. Oh how the times changed.

      1. Scott e manno says:

        Hi, I remember when i went to that beautiful school back in the middle 60`s.I was 9 yrs old when i got hit by a car,anybody remember that?..lol…it`s funny now but back then it was not good.Drop me a line in my email if you remember.

  2. Mary says:

    First grade through eighth, great memories. I too walked home everyday for lunch, in fact that is how I just came upon this site, telling my seven year old grandson my experiences. We lived on 20th behind Windsor Park, so enjoyed those days.

  3. Patsy says:

    I attended Eliot for the 6th, 7th, and 8th grade. I did not walk home from school, but instead ate at a little store owned by a man named Roy Rogers (really). Sometimes I ate at the baker on the corner (Schuler’s). I love that building — wish someone would restore it to its earlier beauty.

    1. Susan Mayer says:

      I lived across the street from Eliot. 4234 N Florissant. I worked at Toys before, after and at lunch time. He was a great guy. The bakery was also great. Remember they had hot dogs at lunch!!

      1. Scott e manno says:

        Hi, I remember when i went to that beautiful school back in the middle 60`s.I was 9 yrs old when i got hit by a car,anybody remember that?..lol…it`s funny now but back then it was not good.Drop me a line in my email if you remember.

      2. Joe Campbell says:

        Susan,You and I were in the same class, Joe Campbell, attended Eliot 1st to 8 th grade Was good friends with Mike Evans and Everett Vinson, Miss Haagen called us the three musketeers So many memories of growing up in a much simpler time

      3. anne says:

        i have been looking for Penrose St information for decades! was a grand time then … loved the area! what was the store on the corner? was that Schulers? i was so young , mid sixties , had family that owned a townhome near the shop and the owner had an older daughter i sometimes would visit

        i drove thru early 90s but was scared so drove away before going down Penrose.

        such fond memories! there was Mr Softy? and hot pistachio cart? recall the sights and sounds from way back then. beautiful, simple times. sadly most of my family now gone and mom and pop do not recall much at their age. sorry a long post!

        1. Anne says:

          just spoke to sn Aunt … i had wrong info … her friend lived on Penrose and thats what i recalled … had a gorgeous garden , and she said on corner was a small convenient type shop! sorry for making mistakes in post above!

  4. curtis merritt says:

    I remember walking home twice every day that we didnt paper bag our lunch. The island out front of school was a big deal then, as you could get run over twice crossing the street.. Just ask Grace, lol.
    we had neighborhoods back then and had great friends, some for life. I would surely go back for just a little bit….
    my last year was 69 and i went on to high school in another part of the state but remember well.

    1. RICKY J. NOBLIN says:

      I was in the 8th grade class in 69 too. Seems so long ago now

  5. Cindi Freeman Rossiter says:

    I remember that island lol. And thanks for mentioning the name of the bakery..i had forgotten. I lived at 1413 penrose and went to eliot 3rd -7th..then was rezoned to Clay in fall of 64.

  6. Charlotte Parker says:

    My 4th grade teacher was Mrs Piper and i have always wonder about how long she taught at Eliot and if she is stil with us .she was one of the best teacher I had

    1. Scott e manno says:

      Hi, I remember when i went to that beautiful school back in the middle 60`s.I was 9 yrs old when i got hit by a car,anybody remember that?..lol…it`s funny now but back then it was not good.Drop me a line in my email if you remember.

  7. Tim Parker says:

    I have my dad’s Class ring from Eliot. I was told he was class president. Russell Parker would have be 1955 06 1956. Also have his 8th grade autograph book and a few photos of a school dance

    1. Chris Naffziger says:

      Tim, I would love to see those photos! Can you e-mail them to me?

    2. Henry Spitzmiller says:

      I graduated from Elliot in January of 19 60 I went there from kindergarten to the 8th grade then my family moved Spanish Lake and I went Hazelwood high school what a shock it was for me I missed the city live

  8. Susan Mayer says:

    I lived across the street from Eliot. 4234 N Florissant. I worked at Roys before, after and at lunch time. He was a great guy. The bakery was also great. Remember they had hot dogs at lunch!!

    1. Juanita Fischbach Caviness says:

      I remember the Ice cold wet
      bottle of Pomac.
      Does anyone remember that
      soft drink? I lived at
      4215 Grove St
      Roy’s Store isn’t there anymore.
      I t’s amazing how the neighborhood has changed.

  9. Faith Varner says:

    I attended Elliot 3rd, 6th and 7th grades in the early 80’s. I thought this building was beautiful like a majestic piece of architecture at an early age. I loved the wide long hall ways and tall ceilings as a kid. Our neighborhoods were still mixed, we lived 20 hundred Penrose St. a block up from 5th District Police Station and Windsor Park. We had a great block unit, block parties and fun. I remember walking to school and having award ceremonies on the front lawn. Im saddened when i visit St. Louis and see so many of these beautiful school structures vacant due to the demise St. Louis City allowed and planned to deprive these area’s of education.

    1. Chris Naffziger says:

      Hello Faith, good to hear from you! I didn’t realize you went to school in Hyde Park.

    2. Scott e manno says:

      Hi, I remember when i went to that beautiful school back in the middle 60`s.I was 9 yrs old when i got hit by a car,anybody remember that?..lol…it`s funny now but back then it was not good.Drop me a line in my email if you remember.

  10. Scott Manno says:

    Hi, I remember when i went to that beautiful school back in the middle 60`s.I was 9 yrs old when i got hit by a car,anybody remember that?..lol…it`s funny now but back then it was not good.Drop me a line in my email if you remember.

  11. Jean Fulford says:

    I went to Eliot school. Kindergarten through 6th grade. A lot of good memories for sure. We lived on Kossuth and walked to school every day and home for lunch. My maiden name is Smart!

  12. Beverly Mccabe Spurlin says:

    I went to Eliot in the 60’s. We lived on Kossuth. How I miss those days. I did tend to be a bully back then. So sorry for any and all pain I caused to all of you.

    1. Juanita Caviness says:

      Beverly Mccabe, my name was
      Juanita Fischbach when we two were class. -mates at Eliot. Schoo.l.
      ,Mrs Heuer and. Mr Anderson, I remember you well, Do you remember me?
      How about a boy named
      John that we almost fought over in the Tower Show bathroom?
      Your ol der sister is named
      Cathy, right? or is it the other way around.? If so then you and my older sister was your classmate.. Her name is Susan .
      Very cool. I Love this site!

  13. I was in the 3rd grade in 1963, that was the year p president Kennedy got shot, I cannot remember that teachers name. In 4th grade I had Miss Piper I was her pet, she always said I was gonna be so.ebody Famous and she was gonna come see me and I wouldn’t remember her. I NEVER QUIT GOT THERE MISS PIPER. SHE ALSO SAID I LOOKED LIKE HER DAUGHTER IN LAW. I ALWAYS WONDERED WHAT SHE LOOKED LIKE BECAUSE MISS PIPER WAS THE FIRST AND ONLY BLACK TEACHER WE HAD AT ELLIOT, SHE WAS A GREAT TEACHER, MADE LEARNING FUN, WAS LIKED BY EVERYONE, A WONDERFULL TEACHER. YOU REALLY HAD TO STREAT GET ON HER NEARVES TO MAKE HER REALLY MAD, SHE HAD A LOT OF PATIENTS WOULD TURN IT AROUND MOST OF THE TIME BUT ID SHE COULDN’T TURN IT AROUND YOU DESERVED WHAT EVER SHE DID TO TO YOU.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.