Back in 2021, I looked at some of the other streets in Carondelet, and I also took a look at the heavy industry that made the suburb south of St. Louis into an economic powerhouse, a true independent town with its own government and society. I was delighted to discover Pennsylvania Avenue, formerly 2nd Street, one block west of South Broadway, gives us a window into the early housing of the workers who filled the factories and mills that lined the riverfront. We start at Robert Avenue, which was at one point Taylor Street (just about all the streets in Carondelet had different names when it was an independent city).
Crossing over Nagel Avenue, former Roswell and St. Louis streets, which we’ve looked at before back in March of 2021, we then head north looking at a block that has several vacant lots.
Most of the industry stayed east of South Broadway, but here there is at least one warehouse or old factory.
Many of the houses are wood frame, and very old, now covered with asphalt shingles as opposed to brick.
There are many duplexes, as well, such as these Second Empire examples below. There is creeping abandonment in this area, unfortunately.
There are also many Greek Revival cottages, many grouped together. The dormers are probably more recent, added to increase living space on the second floor.
What is also interesting is to see how porches have been added on to these houses at a later date, as well.
Due to street grading, which is when the surface of the earth was smoothed out and leveled, many of these houses’ front doors are probably higher now than originally.
That is certainly the case for this house below.
I strongly suspect many of these houses, including the one below, might very well date to the years around the Civil War, or immediately after. We’ll continue north on Pennsylvania Avenue past Loughborough, which was originally Pine Street.