John F. Kennedy High School, Demolished

Kennedy High School is no more. There are only long piles of rubble. The machines who did the deed are sitting around surveying their work, and other Caterpillar products are awaiting their turn to permanently alter the topography to allow for the construction of half a million dollar houses. I’ve seen it across the country,…

Former John F. Kennedy Catholic High School, Under Demolition

Update: Completely demolished by March of 2022. My prediction that the old John F. Kennedy Catholic High School in Manchester would be sold to a developer for houses has come to pass. McBride Berra is demolishing it for Arbors at Celtic Meadows. It is an interesting phenomenon of smaller universities buying old high schools and…

Stratford Inn, Abandoned

The Stratford Inn recently suffered a fire that was probably caused by squatters. It had been abandoned for years, after a long run as an extended stay hotel. I think many Americans don’t realize that there is a huge demand for accommodations for people who can’t afford or don’t have the credit to rent traditional…

Cragwold, January 2022

Oops, I didn’t see that tree branch in the way when I took this photo of Cragwold, Edwin Lemp‘s estate on the bluffs overlooking the Meramec River. The large windows overlooking the valley must have provided stunning views for the reclusive bachelor who took his million dollars and retired from brewing at an early age….

Chesterfield Mall, Blocked Off

Back in January of 2021 we noticed that the owners of Chesterfield Mall were building walls blocking off the old Dillard’s and Sears wings of the mall, which were also the oldest portions. When I went back recently, their plan had been implemented, and those parts had been locked and closed off. A similar form…

Whispering Oakwood, Denouement

Back in mid-August of this year, I had featured a house in Ballwin that had been the center of around a decade of legal and municipal wrangling due to the decoration of the front yard by the owner. We had noticed several months ago that the metal components of the display had been removed, likely…

St. Paul/Jedburgh/Sherman, Late Summer 2021

One of my most popular posts was my examination of the St. Paul/Jedburgh/Sherman area, far to the southwest in rural West County. We went back to see what was happening along St. Paul Road. It is still one of the most isolated parts of the region, but one rich in history. We discovered the house…

The End of an Era, Whispering Oakwood, Ballwin

Update: The house was foreclosed on and demolished in the late summer of 2021. We’d first noticed it a couple of months ago. The famous house in Ballwin that had garnered considerable media attention over a decade ago due to its sculpture garden commemorating the Holocaust looked different. Then it became obvious–the steel and other…

Resurrection of the Zombie Subdivision, Wildwood

We returned to the zombie subdivision in Wildwood that was one of the victims of the housing crash back in 2008 (remember that–it seems a million years ago now). It’s actually sort of interesting to see how the real estate market dealt with this problem. Off Crescent Road, individual homeowners have simply bought the adjacent…

Old Quarry, Town and Country

You never know what you’ll find down a quiet subdivision street in Town and Country. Passing down an old road in between squares of eighty acres of old farmland-turned-subdivisions, something doesn’t look normal. An old aerial photograph from 1955 reveals that there was a quarry active since at least 1937, and it was still visible…