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Old 02-24-2020, 01:42 PM
 
7 posts, read 1,920 times
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Is there a good book (or a historian) on this forum who has insight into how the St. Louis suburbs originated? I.E. what are the oldest suburbs? And how did the re-zonation occur? For example, did Brentwood originate out of Ladue, or did it always exist?

I keep hearing about rezonation issues as well (e.g. rezonation for Kirkwood schools) and would be fascinating to read about how this evolved over the years/decades in St. Louis, (presumed) motivations for this, etc.

Thanks!
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Old 02-24-2020, 04:13 PM
 
Location: StlNoco Mo, where the woodbine twineth
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There probably are books about the history of all the towns in St. Louis county, but you can find info about each town on Wikipedia.
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Old 02-24-2020, 09:19 PM
 
Location: St. Louis City
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I thought Kirkwood was the first planned suburb. Can't recall where I read that.
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Old 02-25-2020, 08:00 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by STLCityMike View Post
I thought Kirkwood was the first planned suburb. Can't recall where I read that.
According to Wikipedia, the first west of the Mississippi.

Florissant was a Spanish and French settlement dating back to the early days of European settlement. Valley Park was a Mississippian settlement up until Europeans pushed them out in the 18th century. Carondolet was founded in 1767, but later annexed by St. Louis.

In other words, I think the question is interesting, but the precise answer depends on your precise definition of "oldest" and "suburb".

The fastest way to research is probably to do Wikipedia queries about the local municipalities, and follow the citations of the ones most interesting to you.
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Old 02-25-2020, 01:20 PM
 
2,808 posts, read 3,086,833 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kulkarnihd29 View Post
Is there a good book (or a historian) on this forum who has insight into how the St. Louis suburbs originated? I.E. what are the oldest suburbs? And how did the re-zonation occur? For example, did Brentwood originate out of Ladue, or did it always exist?

I keep hearing about rezonation issues as well (e.g. rezonation for Kirkwood schools) and would be fascinating to read about how this evolved over the years/decades in St. Louis, (presumed) motivations for this, etc.

Thanks!

I have two on my shelf that do a fair job. (1) St Louis Then and Now by Elizabeth McNulty. There are a lot of pictures with brief messages below. (2) "American City" - text by Robert Sharoff. Its concentration is on arcitecture but it does go into history - again with a lot of pictures.


Then, there is a series of neighborhood books which really have history. For example, I have one titles "Sappington-Concord - A History" There is real history in these books including stories of original settlers. Barnes & Noble - and probably other book stores - can show you many more just like this one. Also libraries.



Hazel W
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Old 02-26-2020, 07:56 PM
 
Location: Illinois
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You can tell what the old ones are by looking at the street grids. Webster Groves, Kirkwood, Valley Park and Eureka were all stops on the Missouri Pacific rail so those towns popped up a long time ago. St. Charles is almost as old as St. Louis and was the original state capital. Ferguson and Florissant are also very old.

E. StL, Alton, Belleville etc all have great histories too
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Old 02-27-2020, 06:32 AM
 
Location: CasaMo
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I would check St. Louis county library.
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Old 02-27-2020, 03:45 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FalstaffBlues View Post
You can tell what the old ones are by looking at the street grids. Webster Groves, Kirkwood, Valley Park and Eureka were all stops on the Missouri Pacific rail so those towns popped up a long time ago. St. Charles is almost as old as St. Louis and was the original state capital. Ferguson and Florissant are also very old.

E. StL, Alton, Belleville etc all have great histories too
Thanks! All of your answers have been fascinating and I appreciate the suggestions too.
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Old 02-28-2020, 08:18 AM
 
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You might also like the Images of America series of books, which cover various local towns and neighborhoods.
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Old 03-09-2020, 05:22 PM
 
Location: St. Louis
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"Lion of the Valley" is a good book to check out. It documents StL's change from being French city to the mid-twentieth century.
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