Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Railyard, Lemp Brewery

This great Sanborn Fire Insurance Map makes identifying the various buildings of the Lemp Brewery much easier, though I think several buildings must have been built after this digitized copy was published originally.As can be seen, the upper right hand portion of the brewery grounds was kept open for rail tracks, allowing beer to be loaded directly from elevators that brought the beer up from the cellars.In the shadow of the reinforced concrete grain silos, the small building I had shown before apparently was the locomotive house for the Lemp's railroad.The light was really beautiful on the Saturday I was out at the Lemp Brewery.I love how the neighborhood surrounding the brewery is still right across the street, and not blocks away because of surface parking lots, like so many "urban" industrial concerns nowadays. Can you imagine living thirty feet from a grain silo in the middle of a city?

Monday, November 29, 2010

Lemp Brewery, Details

The door above at the Lemp Brewery is pretty self explanatory; I like the use of the abbreviation for "Department."Above, the terracotta sign reminds us of the long-defunct railroad William Lemp founded to transport his beer around the United States. Read about it here.A stairwell, still coated in severely rusted paint, inside one of the out buildings of the brewery.I really like this star pattern, which holds the tie rods that still run through the brew house. Below, two bumpers on the corners of buildings make for a great shot.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Lemp Brewery, Revisited

When I get back from the Thanksgiving break, I will be posting extensive photos of several buildings open to the public this last weekend at the historic (and amazing) Lemp Brewery.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Laclede's Landing

Laclede's Landing gets ridiculed so much because of its failed attempts at revitalization back in the 1980's, that we forget that what still stands is really incredible.Ignore the tourists, and get down there and remind yourself that there used to be literally dozens of more blocks in St. Louis that once looked like this, and are gone forever.Perhaps Laclede's Landing is at a cusp of losing its old image as a crumby, depressing bar district and instead is about to come a real neighborhood with real residents.We can only dream, can't we?

Monday, November 22, 2010

Burn-Out, Collinsville Avenue, East St. Louis

As I once remarked while surveying the burnt out ruins of Fourth Baptist in Old North St. Louis, it almost doesn't matter if the fire that recently destroyed one of the few precious contributing buildings on East St. Louis's Collinsville Avenue was intentional or merely an accident.Since it appears to have been abandoned for years, the real culprit is neglect. If East St. Louis is ever to rise from the ashes of its current state, it wouldn't hurt to have its still beautiful if slightly dilapidated downtown around to lead the way.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Penrose and Fairgrounds

Lee Avenue is for some reason a broad, open street, with a fascinating mix of architectural styles. You can almost see the development of the city decade by decade as you drive along it.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Pleasantview School, Washington Township, Illinois

Rural America is not without its abandoned buildings, as can be seen in the abandoned school house near my family's farm in Illinois. Tucked away on back road, it is left to decay in obscurity.See earlier pictures of the school here; little has changed over the last year.What do the owners of this idyllic farm feel about the abandoned school? Indifferent? Annoyed?Some beer connoisseurs apparently have been partying near the school, as evidenced by this empty Bud Light case.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Pierre Menard House

The Pierre Menard House, once the home of the governor of Illinois, is still in great condition, reopened since it was closed Blagojevich.The large porch continues in back, allowing access to the summer kitchen. The garden is planted with typical plants common at the time.In the back is presumably the root cellar or ice house, built in hulking masonry into the side of the hill.The large structure in the back still has an indeterminate purpose. Perhaps it was also an ice house, or also it could have been a block house for defense. Illinois was still very much on the frontier at the time, so personal safety was of utmost importance.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Kaskaskia, Illinois

It's hard to believe that the capital of Illinois, Kaskaskia, once lay where the Mississippi River now churns.One remnant, the Pierre Menard House, once was on the outskirts of the town, but now has a panoramic river view.In what is one of the more bizarre and evocative sights I have ever seen, the townspeople quickly moved a cemetery to higher ground to avoid the destruction of the Mississippi River when it changed course, cutting across the peninsula.Read bout Kaskaskia here, and see it from the air here.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Far North Riverfront

While the Near North Riverfront gets more attention because it's easier to see from downtown, the Far North Riverfront holds some interesting surprises as well.Above, this very cool building anchors the Bissell Point Waterworks, or Waste Treatment Center, not sure which one. I like its curving lines.Unbeknownst to a lot of people, the City of St. Louis burns much of its trash in two incinerators, such as this one. Talk about a huge, hulking building.Finally, the massive approaches to the Merchants' Bridge rise north of the McKinley Bridge. Perhaps the most difficult bridge to photograph due to its isolation, the Merchants' looks very similar to the McKinley, its southern neighbor.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

San Francisco Court

We discovered another amazing Modernist enclave in North St. Louis, just to the northeast of Natural Bridge and Kinghsighway.Originally a victory garden during World War II, it was purchased by a developer and turned into ranch houses in the 1960's.The western portion of the tract became the Carousel Motel, facing Kingshighway.

A Blog detailing the beauty of St. Louis architecture and the buildup of residue-or character-that accumulates over the course of time.