MO -- St. Louis -- Gateway Arch -- Museum of Westward Expansion -- Riverfront Era:
Bruce Guthrie Photos Home Page: [Click here] to go to Bruce Guthrie Photos home page.
Recognize anyone? If you recognize specific folks (or other stuff) and I haven't labeled them, please identify them for the world. Click the little pencil icon underneath the file name (just above the picture). Spammers need not apply.
Copyrights: All pictures were taken by amateur photographer Bruce Guthrie (me!) who retains copyright on them. Free for non-commercial use with attribution. See the [Creative Commons] definition of what this means. "Photos (c) Bruce Guthrie" is fine for attribution. (Commercial use folks including AI scrapers can of course contact me.) Feel free to use in publications and pages with attribution but you don't have permission to sell the photos themselves. A free copy of any printed publication using any photographs is requested. Descriptive text, if any, is from a mixture of sources, quite frequently from signs at the location or from official web sites; copyrights, if any, are retained by their original owners.
Spiders: The system has identified your IP as being a spider. I love well-behaved spiders! They are, in fact, how most people find my site. Unfortunately, my network has a limited bandwidth and pictures take up bandwidth. Spiders ask for lots and lots of pages and chew up lots and lots of bandwidth which slows things down considerably for regular folk. To counter this, you'll see all the text on the page but the images are being suppressed. Also, a number of options like merges are being blocked for you.
Note: Permission is NOT granted for spiders, robots, etc to use the site for AI-generation purposes. I'm excited for your ability to make revenue from my work but there's nothing in that for my human users or for me.
If you are in fact human, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I can check if your designation was made in error. Given your number of hits, that's unlikely but what the hell.
Specific picture descriptions: Photos above with "i" icons next to the bracketed sequence numbers (e.g. " ") are described as follows:
MWXRIV_180918_010.JPG: The Old Rock House
MWXRIV_180918_027.JPG: Clark's Museum
MWXRIV_180918_029.JPG: A Cabinet of Curiosities
MWXRIV_180918_034.JPG: Passes to the West
MWXRIV_180918_044.JPG: A New World
MWXRIV_180918_050.JPG: Explorations West of the Mississippi, 1804-1841
MWXRIV_180918_052.JPG: Fur Trade Explorers
Mapping South Pass
MWXRIV_180918_054.JPG: Opening the Route to Sante Fe
Fur Trappers Scout Many Routes West
MWXRIV_180918_056.JPG: Jedidiah Smith
Reports on California and Oregon
MWXRIV_180918_058.JPG: U.S. Government Surveys
Overland to Oregon
MWXRIV_180918_060.JPG: Jim Beckwourth
A Mountain Pass Bears the Name of a Free Black Adventurer
MWXRIV_180918_068.JPG: Seeking One Hundred "Enterprising Young Men"
MWXRIV_180918_070.JPG: "Making His Set"
MWXRIV_180918_072.JPG: Trapping Beaver
MWXRIV_180918_074.JPG: Replica Wooden Container for Castoreum
The scent of castoreum was used to bait beaver traps
MWXRIV_180918_079.JPG: Mountainmen Worked Hard for Little Pay in Hostile "Indian Country"
MWXRIV_180918_083.JPG: Beaver Tail
Mountainmen sometimes ate beaver tail, which was rich in fat and protein
MWXRIV_180918_087.JPG: Fur Trade Opens Trails West
MWXRIV_180918_089.JPG: Beaver Hats
MWXRIV_180918_096.JPG: Hatmaking Process
MWXRIV_180918_109.JPG: Oregon Trail
MWXRIV_180918_114.JPG: Mormon Trail
MWXRIV_180918_119.JPG: California Trail
MWXRIV_180918_121.JPG: Migration and Money
Overlanders and American Indians
MWXRIV_180918_130.JPG: Smashed Pottery Tells a Tale of British Imports
MWXRIV_180918_135.JPG: Drinking Water Came from the Muddy Mississippi
MWXRIV_180918_144.JPG: The Great Fire Reshaped the Riverfront
MWXRIV_180918_147.JPG: The Great Fire's Toll...
10 tons of cargo on the landing
1 canal boat
3 known fatalities, one of firefighter
all or part of 15 city blocks
MWXRIV_180918_150.JPG: Archaeological Remains Tell a Tale of Hotel Life
MWXRIV_180918_154.JPG: The St. Louis Levee was Always Busy
MWXRIV_180918_173.JPG: St. Louis Riverfront Destroyed Overnight
A New City Emerged from the Fire
MWXRIV_180918_174.JPG: A Brave Firefighter Lost His Life
Rebuilt with Fireproof Brick
MWXRIV_180918_182.JPG: Take Your Medicine!
MWXRIV_180918_187.JPG: In 1849
it was estimated that at least 4,500 people died of cholera in St. Louis
out of a population of 63,000
In an average year during the 1840s
there were only about 1,000 deaths from all causes if St. Louis
The cholera epidemic wiped out about 7% of the city's population
The gold rush pioneers carried cholera westward from St. Louis. It was the single biggest killer of emigrants on the overland trails.
Waste + vibrio cholera (bacteria) + drinking water = cholera
MWXRIV_180918_190.JPG: First the Fire... Then a Deadly Epidemic
MWXRIV_180918_191.JPG: In the Aftermath of the Great Fire, St. Louisans Died of Cholera
The City That Steps for Public Health
MWXRIV_180918_195.JPG: John Berry & Mary Meachum
In St. Louis, a Black Minister and His Wife Helped Enslaved People to Freedom
MWXRIV_180918_197.JPG: Floating Palaces and Their Pilots
MWXRIV_180918_200.JPG: The Pilot's Wheel
MWXRIV_180918_207.JPG: Samuel L. Clemens (Mark Twain)
"When I was a boy there was but one permanent ambition... to become a steamboatman."
-- Mark Twain, Life on the Mississippi
MWXRIV_180918_209.JPG: Who Came to the Levee?
MWXRIV_180918_214.JPG: Odometers Charted Daily Distances on the Trail
MWXRIV_180918_218.JPG: Covered Wagons
MWXRIV_180918_224.JPG: Oxen and Mules
MWXRIV_180918_229.JPG: Covered Wagon Tactile
MWXRIV_180918_232.JPG: The City Grew Fast!
MWXRIV_180918_235.JPG: Going West?
Buy Everything in St. Louis
MWXRIV_180918_237.JPG: Heading West? Buy what you need in St. Louis! Prices are cheaper than at the trailheads.
MWXRIV_180918_240.JPG: Temperance Westwood Moon
With earnings from St. Louis employment, an orphaned emigrant continued west
MWXRIV_180918_261.JPG: Provisioning for the Overland Trails
MWXRIV_180918_266.JPG: Samantha Packwood
Young Samantha rode the Oregon Trail with her family
MWXRIV_180918_278.JPG: Lights for the Busy Riverfront
AAA "Gem": AAA considers this location to be a "must see" point of interest. To see pictures of other areas that AAA considers to be Gems, click here.
Wikipedia Description: Jefferson National Expansion Memorial
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Jefferson National Expansion Memorial is located in St. Louis, Missouri near the starting point of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. It was designated as a National Memorial by Executive Order 7523, on December 21, 1935, and is maintained by the National Park Service (NPS).
The park was established to commemorate several historical events:
* the Louisiana Purchase, and the subsequent westward movement of American explorers and pioneers;
* the first civil government west of the Mississippi River;
* the debate over slavery raised by the Dred Scott case.
The memorial site consists of a 91 acres (37 ha) park along the Mississippi River on the site of the original city of St. Louis; the Old Courthouse, a former state and federal courthouse which saw the origins of the Dred Scott case; the 4,200 m2 (45,000 sq ft) Museum of Westward Expansion; and most notably, the Gateway Arch, an inverted steel catenary arch that has become the definitive icon of the city.
Today, the park is host to four million visitors each year, three quarters of whom enter the Arch or the Old Courthouse.
The Gateway Arch:
Main article: Gateway Arch
The Gateway Arch is known as the "Gateway to the West". It was designed by Finnish-American architect Eero Saarinen and structural engineer Hannskarl Bandel in 1947 and built between 1963 and 1968. It is the only building in the world based on the catenary arch, making it the iconic image of the city. It stands 192.024 meters (630 ft) tall and 192.024 meters (630 ft) wide at its base. The legs are 16.46 meters (54 ft) wide at the base, narrowing to 5.18 meters (17 ft) at the arch. There is a unique tram system to carry passengers to the observation room at the top of the arch.
Main article: Old Courthouse
The Old Courthouse is built on land originally deeded by St. Louis founder Auguste Chouteau. It marks the location over which the arch reaches. Its dome was built during the American Civil War and is similar to the dome on the United States Capitol which was also built during the Civil War. It was the site of the local trials in the Dred Scott case.
The courthouse is the only portion of the memorial west of I-70. To the west of the Courthouse is a Greenway between Market and Chestnut Streets which is only interrupted by the Civil Courts Building which features a pyramid model of the Mausoleum of Maussollos (which was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World) on its roof. When Civil Courts building was built in the 1920s the Chouteau family sued to regain the property belonging the Old Courthouse because it had been deeded in perpetuity to be a courthouse.
Museum of Westward Expansion:
Underneath the Arch is a visitor center, entered from a descending outdoor ramp starting at either base. Within the center is the Museum of Westward Expansion, exhibits on the history of the St. Louis riverfront, and tram loading and unloading areas. Tucker Theater, finished in 1968 and renovated 30 years later, has about 285 seats and shows a documentary (Monument to the Dream) on the Arch's construction. Odyssey Theater, designed by Cox/Croslin Architects was completed in 1993 and has 255 seats. It was the first 70 mm film theater to be located on National Park Service grounds and operated by the NPS. The theater runs films from a rotating play list. Also located in the visitor center are retail operations run by the Jefferson National Parks Association, a not-for-profit partner.
The memorial was developed largely through the efforts of St. Louis civic booster Luther Ely Smith who first pitched the idea in 1933, was the long-term chairman of the committee that selected the area and persuaded Franklin Roosevelt in 1935 to make it a national park after St. Louis passed a bond issue to begin building it, and who partially financed the 1947 architectural contest that selected the Arch.
In the early 1930s the United States began looking for a suitable memorial for Thomas Jefferson (the Washington Monument and the newly built Lincoln Memorial were the only large Presidential memorials at the time).
Shortly after Thanksgiving in 1933 Smith who had been on the commission to build the George Rogers Clark National Historical Park in Indiana, was returning via train when he noticed the poor condition or the original platted location of St. Louis along the Mississippi. He thought that the memorial to Jefferson should be on the actual location that was symbolic of one of Jefferson's greatest triumphs -- the Louisiana Purchase.
The originally platted area of St. Louis included:
* Site of the Spanish capital of Louisiana (New Spain) (basically the entire Louisiana Purchase area north of Louisiana from the city's founding in 1764 until it was turned .
* Site of the Battle of Saint Louis, the only battle west of the Mississippi River in the American Revolutionary War
* Site of the Three Flags Day ceremony in 1804 in which Spain turned over Louisiana to France for less than 24 hour before it was turned over to the United States clearing the way for Lewis and Clark to legally begin their exploration (which Spain had specifically prohibited)
* Site of the first capital of Upper Louisiana for the United States
Almost all of the historic buildings associated with this period had been replaced by newer buildings. His idea was to raze all of the buildings in the original St. Louis platted area and replace it with a park with "a central feature, a shaft, a building, an arch, or something which would symbolize American culture and civilization."
Smith pitched the idea to Bernard Dickmann who quickly assembled a meeting of St. Louis civic leaders on December 15, 1933 at the Jefferson Hotel and they endorsed the plan and Smith became chairman of what would become the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial Association (a position he would hold until 1949 with a one-year exception).
The Commission then defined the area, got cost estimates of $30 million to buy the land, clear the buildings and erect a park and monument. With promises from the federal government (via the United States Territorial Expansion Memorial Commission) to join if the City of St. Louis could raise money.
The area to be included in the park was the Eads Bridge/Washington Avenue on the north and Poplar Street on the south, the Mississippi River on the east Third Street (now I-70) on the west plus the Old Courthouse just west of Third Street (the Courthouse was actually added in 1940).
The only building in this area not included was the Old Cathedral, which is on the site of St. Louis first church and was opposite the home of St. Louis founder Auguste Chouteau. The founders of the city were buried in its graveyard (but were moved in 1849 to Bellefontaine Cemetery during a cholera outbreak).
Taking away 40 blocks in the center of St. Louis was bitterly fought by some sources -- particularly the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
On September 10, 1935, the voters of St. Louis approved a $7.5 million bond issue to buy the property.
The buildings were bought for $7 million by the federal government via Eminent domain and was subject to considerable litigation but were ultimately bought at 131.99 percent of assessed valuation.
Roosevelt inspected the memorial area on October 14, 1936 during the dedication of the St. Louis Soldiers Memorial . Included in the party was then Senator Harry S. Truman.
The land was to be cleared by 1942. Among the buildings razed was the "Old Rock House" 1818 home of fur trader Manuel Lisa (now occupied by the stairs on the north side of the Arch) and the 1819 home of original St. Louis pioneer Jean Pierre Chouteau at First and Washington.
The architectural competition for a monument was delayed by World War II. Interest in the monument was fed after the war as it was to be the first big monument in the post-World War II era.
The estimated cost of the competition was $225,000 and Smith personally donated $40,000. Civic leaders held the nation-wide competition in 1947 to select a design for the main portion of the Memorial space.
Architect Eero Saarinen won this competition with plans for a 590-foot (180-metre) catenary arch to be placed on the banks of the Mississippi River. However, these plans were modified over the next 15 years, placing the arch on higher ground and adding 40 feet (12 m) in height and width.
The central architectural feature at the base of the arch is the Old Courthouse, which was once the tallest building in Missouri and has a dome similar to the United States Capitol and was placed on the building during the American Civil War at the same time as that on the U.S. Capitol.
Saarinen developed the shape with the help of architectural engineer Hannskarl Bandel. It is not a pure inverted catenary. Saarinen preferred a shape that was slightly elongated and thinner towards the top, a shape that produces a subtle soaring effect, and transfers more of the structure's weight downward rather than outward at the base.
When Saarinen won the competition, the official notification was sent to "E. Saarinen", thinking it to be the architect's father Eliel Saarinen, who had also submitted an entry. The family celebrated with a bottle of champagne, and two hours later an embarrassed official called to say the winner was, in fact, the younger Saarinen. The elder Saarinen then broke out a second bottle of champagne to celebrate his son's success.
Among the five finalists was local St. Louis architect Harris Armstrong.
Land for the memorial was formally dedicated on June 10, 1950 by Harry S. Truman. However the Korean War began and the project was put on hold.
On June 23, 1959, work begins on covering railroad tracks that cut across the memorial grounds.
On February 11, 1961 excavation began.
On September 1, 1961 Saarinen died.
On February 12, 1963 the first stainless steel triangle that forms the first section of the arch was set in place on the south leg.
On October 28, 1965 it was completed, costing approximately US$15 million to build. Along with all other historical areas of the National Park Service, the memorial was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on October 15, 1966. Vice President Hubert Humphrey and Secretary of the Interior Stewart Udall dedicated the Arch on May 25, 1968.
In 1984, Congress authorized the enlargement of the Memorial to include up to 100 acres (0.4 km2) on the east bank of the Mississippi River in East St. Louis, Illinois. Funds were authorized to begin land acquisition, but Congress placed a moratorium upon NPS land acquisitions in fiscal year 1998. The moratorium continued into the 21st century, with expansion becoming less likely because of the construction of a riverboat gambling facility and related amenities.
During the Great Flood of 1993, Mississippi flood waters reached half way up the Grand Staircase on the east.
In 1999, the Arch tram queue areas were completely renovated at a cost of approximately $2.2 million.
In 1999 the Ulysses S. Grant National Historic Site in St. Louis County, Missouri was brought under the Superintendent of the Memorial jurisdiction.
The arch was featured on the Missouri state quarter in 2003.
In 2007 St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay and former Missouri Senator John Danforth asked the National Park Service to create a more "active" use of the grounds of the memorial and model it on Millennium Park in Chicago including the possibility of an amphitheater, cafes and restaurants, fountains, bicycle rentals, sculptures and an aquarium. The National Park Service is currently cool to the plan noting that the only other overt development pressure on National Park property has been at the Jackson Hole Airport in Grand Teton National Park
The Memorial is separated from the rest of Downtown St. Louis by a sunken section of I-70. The city is considering a $90 million proposal to cover the interstate. The NPS, as part of their Centennial Initiative celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2016, is considering a plan to complete Saarinen's original master plan. The intention is to build the Gateway Arch Connector to link the Old Courthouse with the grounds of the Arch.
Bigger photos? To save server space, the full-sized versions of these images have either not been loaded to the server or have been removed from the server. (Only some pages are loaded with full-sized images and those usually get removed after three months.)
I still have them though. If you want me to email them to you, please send an email to email@example.com
and I can email them to you, or, depending on the number of images, just repost the page again will the full-sized images.
Connection Not Secure messages? Those warnings you get from your browser about this site not having secure connections worry some people. This means this site does not have SSL installed (the link is http:, not https:). That's bad if you're entering credit card numbers, passwords, or other personal information. But this site doesn't collect any personal information so SSL is not necessary. Life's good!