photograph by Patrick Gioia
No doubt, Old North St. Louis has become synonymous with redevelopment on the city’s blighted north side, but Old North is not the only historically significant neighborhood worthy of a renaissance (nor are all north side neighborhoods “lost”). Once home to Sportman’s Park, JeffVanderLou (originally Yeatman) was a community woven together by baseball. Still, “America’s Pastime” was not the neighborhood’s first industry; close to the downtown warehouses, manufacturing was the major contributor of jobs both before and after the Stadium. Additionally, JVL burgeoned into a vibrant African-American community whose important contributions are still felt. Today, much of the iconic architecture has unfortunately been leveled (including the once resplendent manses and apartments near North Grand), but some very interesting structures and ornamentation do remain.
photograph by Jason Gray