Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Lost Quarries of the South Side
Toby Weiss has done an excellent job of documenting quarries in the Cote Brilliante area of North St. Louis, but it turns out that such quarries were not limited to just the northern half of the city. And just as has happened up north, problems of subsidence of the fill dumped into these quarries seems to have claimed victims on the south side as well. At the intersection of Virigina and Delor, far south in Dutchtown, at least two former quarries sit abandoned and filled in with rubble.Looking at old Sanborn maps, you can see that the Eyermann Quarry once operated in a large pit in what should have been Compton Avenue. The street still doesn't go through. According to a website I found that talks about St. Louis quarries, the Eyermann Quarry was known for high quality stone. Nothing remains of the quarry except for flat, rolling terrain. Looking at a satellite image, you can see what appear to be streets or concrete paths through the site. I suspect that in-fill was built on the site, and has since been torn down due to subsidence. Interestingly, Anheuser Busch owns the quarry's strange-shaped plot of land with the address of 5100 Virginia.Up on the hill, along Minnesota, the old Haller Quarry shows why the upper portion of the site sits abandoned.The apartment building below, I suspect, would give us a clue about what once sat on the site before demolition. The 1950's saw many of the old quarries closed, and Modernist apartment buildings replaced many of the holes in the grid, along with single family houses elsewhere in the city.A quick look on the map below confirms these were quarries; in fact, it looks like there were once at least five quarries in southern Dutchtown. Is your house sitting on top of one?
A Blog detailing the beauty of St. Louis architecture and the buildup of residue-or character-that accumulates over the course of time.