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12, May 2017

St. Louis's Baseball-Loving Valkyrie

One of America’s greatest Wagnerian sopranos first graced the stage of New York’s Metropolitan Opera House on May 12, 1937, in a new opera by Walter Damrosch. She had this to say of the experience: Read more »

3, May 2017

Deeds of Mistrust

Across the first half of the 20th century, realtors and white homeowners used restrictive deed covenants to stem African Americans' “invasion” of American cities. Such covenants bound those who signed them, as well as subsequent owners, to limit whom a property could be sold to and who could live there. Read more »

30, April 2017

How Did Route 66 Get Its Number?

The black-and-white Route 66 shield is an internationally recognized symbol of America, on par with the Golden Gate Bridge, Gateway Arch, and Statue of Liberty. The road itself is a 2,400-mile icon of America’s collective memory. Even for those of us who weren’t around to drive it during its heyday, the number 66 is mythical. But what if that number had been different, like 60, 62, or even 60N? Read more »

25, April 2017

How the Spanish-American War Met the Society Pages

It’s probably been a while since a St. Louis Post-Dispatch editor has penned several hundred exasperated words about the tango.

 
13, April 2017

Jordan Chambers: The Negro Mayor of St. Louis

In 1931 the St. Louis Post-Dispatch referred to Jordan Chambers, who held no official political office, as the Negro Mayor of St. Louis. Chambers was larger than life, a political power broker whose influence was far reaching. It was said that little happened in St. Louis politics—or in the black community in general—that Chambers didn’t somehow have a hand in. Read more »

10, April 2017

66 Through St. Louis: Crestwood Bowl

Let’s be honest: For most people, bowling falls into the just-for-kicks category, which makes it feel right at home on Route 66. These days bowling is a hobby at best, something to break up a long family road trip, an activity to do when family visits from out of town, or a relaxing way to spend a weekend night. If you were to ask most people about bowling’s place in the professional-sports world, they might laugh or shrug before readily admitting that bowling is no baseball or football, games with widely accepted greats and unmatched naturals. Read more »

30, March 2017

A Fate of Flames

St. Louis was once home to one of the largest hotels in all the world—until the unthinkable happened. Read more »

24, March 2017

Meet the Potters

St. Louis has a long tradition of cultivating both artists and avenues for delivering their work to receptive audiences. River Styx magazine, for one, has been a vessel for poetry, art, fiction, and nonfiction since 1975, presenting work from Pulitzer Prize winners, poets laureate, and novices alike. Read more »

22, March 2017

Rock 'n' Roll's Founding Father: Chuck Berry

Charles Edward Anderson "Chuck" Berry was born in a three-room cottage at 2520 Goode Avenue (now Annie Malone Drive) in the Ville, the heart of St. Louis’s black community during an era of deep-seated segregation and intense racism. In the all-black, self-contained neighborhood, Berry attended Sumner High School and sang at Antioch Baptist Church. Read more »

17, March 2017

How the Irish Found Gold in St. Louis

Unlike the experiences of Irish immigrants in nearly every other major U.S. city, the Irish who settled in St. Louis in the mid-1800s were embraced—and they thrived. The following is adapted from Rev. William Barnaby Faherty’s 2001 book The St. Louis Irish: An Unmatched Celtic Community, published by the Missouri Historical Society Press. Read more »