Former Bridge, Beach & Co., Revisited

I’ve looked at the massive Bridge, Beach & Co. factory on North Union Boulevard twice before, once in August of 2014 and then again in November of 2018. It seems to stretch onto blocks on both sides of Brown Avenue and terminates on the west side of Geraldine Avenue. The Sanborn Map from 1920 shows…

Richard Pryor and Peoria

I had known for awhile that Richard Pryor was from Peoria, but I had always assumed it was one of those situations where he was born there and had moved away when he was a small child. That is far…

In Search of LeTourneau, Peoria

It is amazing how quickly we lose the memory of the huge old factories that once powered America through peacetime, and then when war came, helped defeat Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan. Few people probably know the LeTourneau name anymore,…

The Kaletta Statuary Company

Editor’s Note: Due to the malfunctioning of St. Louis Patina in mid-January 2022, the original text of this post was lost. In the future, the commentary will be rewritten, but in the meantime, the post’s photos that survived the website crash will be presented as is.

Suspicious Fires Week: The Old Bowling Ball Factory, Jennings

“Fire at an old bowling ball factory on Xograph Avenue in Jennings?” I knew when I heard about this strange occurrence, and how the St. Louis Fire Department had to join their colleagues in the County to help extinguish the flames on Thursday (which later reignited on Friday), I had to go check out this…

Northeast Side of Crunden-Martin, October 2021

I photographed the east side of Crunden-Martin back in the summer of 2020, and not much had changed. The hulking buildings are still vacant, and are built of a sort of pale red brick. A portion of the terracotta cornice, which may have been white or cream-colored when it was originally installed but has turned…

Packers By-Products, National City

More land clearance is happening over by the old National Stockyards, where Armour, Swift and Hunter once slaughtered livestock by the millions for over a century. They’re all demolished now, but one business and its buildings is still standing, at least for now. That was the Packers’ By-Products building, with its infamous doors labeled “Blood”…

Liggett-Meyers Tobacco Company, North Side

The Liggett and Meyers Tobacco Factory stretches between Folsom and Park Avenues, and the north side of the building is perhaps not as often photographed. There are large rounded arch windows of what was originally the power plant, with ten boilers that were served by the massive octagonal smokestack. It’s one of the most popular…

Southwest Avenue Between Reber Place and Botanical Avenue

Heading northeast up Southwest Avenue, we get closer to the heart of the Hill, and see more interesting renovations to houses. More Formstone, which was popular in the mid-Twentieth Century, was added to the front of these houses. Also, the fenestration was altered as well. Below, there is this super rare Italianate wood frame house,…