Posts Tagged ‘East Side’

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The Telephone Company

December 14, 2014

The telephone is possibly the most rapidly advancing technology of our time.  Flip phones alone could have killed the landline, and smartphones compete with almost every other device in our lives.  Public Payphones, once ubiquitous and imperative, are now an endangered species (I’ve been documenting the survivors on my Flickr stream).

Payphone outside of the abandoned Bell Telephone Company at Locust and Beaumont

As fast as the technology changes, one physical reminder of the old days remains in many communities: The telephone company’s local exchange/switching office.

Bell Telephone Company on Natural Bridge at the St. Louis City Limits

These are in addition to the more high-profile downtown headquarters that are a part of every major American City’s skyline.

Old Bell Telephone Building in Downtown St. Louis

AT&T on the Skyline in St. Louis

Below are some of my favorite neighborhood/community telephone company offices in St. Louis.  My full collection of these photos are in this album on Flickr.

Detail on the Natural Bridge Building

Telephone Company in Kirkwood

AT&T

Detail on the Building at Washington and Spring in Grand Center

Kinloch Telephone Exchange in McKinley Heights

Webster Groves AT&T Building

Downtown East Boogie

East St. Louis Telephone Company

Switching Office on Delmar in the Academy Neighborhood

AT&T Building on South Grand

Detail on the Bell Telephone Company in Maplewood

I have yet to visit a number of other telephone company offices in the region, but hope to stumble upon more.  Happy exploring!

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Vote for Cahokia Mounds! Only Three Days Left!

June 27, 2011

The National Trust for Historic Preservation is currently hosting a Community Challenge that will give the three historic sites with the most votes a cash prize.  Currently, Cahokia Mounds is ranked 13th and will require a big push during the last three days of voting to make it into the top three.

As a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Cahokia Mounds gives the St. Louis Area an extremely unique International attraction.  While visiting Berlin recently, I found many references to Museum Island‘s designation as a UNESCO site.  This is a source of great pride for the people of Berlin.  Unfortunately, I don’t think that most St. Louisans appreciate the significance of Cahokia Mounds and are unaware of its status as a World Heritage Site (nobody in my family knew that we had a UNESCO site in St. Louis when I mentioned it in Berlin).  This is our chance to both contribute to Cahokia Mounds, and to help spread the appreciation of our history that the United Nations recognizes while many locals fail to.

If the flying saucer on Grand is worth fighting for, Cahokia Mounds certainly is too.

Click on the image above to register, and cast your vote for Cahokia Mounds.

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East Side Mounds

January 18, 2010

This weekend a buddy of mine from Edwardsville commented to me about the view of mounds along Highway 55/70 approaching St. Louis.  The first mound that draws the eye while heading westbound is Monk’s Mound of Cahokia mounds.  This is arguably the most significant archaeological site in the United States.  Soon after passing this mound however, drivers encounter an even more massive mound, the Milam Landfill.  As I was listening to this account I found a couple of similar reflections on this juxtaposition that are very interesting: a blog entry from Trailer Courier and a story from NPR.  I set out the next day to view this for myself and found that the smell from the landfill was almost more prominent than its massive presence.  Because of this smell I drove directly to Monk’s Mound and ended up enjoying a very pleasant climb and view.

Downtown and the Landfill from Monk's Mound

I chose a foggy afternoon which did not make for the best photo, but towards the right of the shot you can get a decent idea of how large this landmark to our wasteful lifestyle is (from several miles away).

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Downtown East St. Louis

January 6, 2010

A couple of months ago, I decided to hop on the Link and find somewhere new to take a few photographs.  I convinced a friend of mine to come along and then tricked him into jumping off the train at 5th and Missouri to check out downtown East Saint Louis.  As far as I can remember I had never seen East St. from anywhere but the highway and Built St. Louis, but I have also never gone long without hearing a reference to the city as an undesirable place.  My first first-hand experience of East St. Louis was the sprawling, parking lot facing Metrolink station, which is really only in the general vicinity of 5th and Missouri.  Unfortunately I had not done my homework and was not sure where I wanted to go, but luckily I was pulled in the right direction.

First Glance North on Missouri

Immediately after stepping onto Old Missouri Avenue I became very excited at what I was seeing.  This must have been a wonderful place to live.

East Saint Louis Streetscape

In the hour that I spent walking around East St. Louis I only ran into one other person on the street (who was looking to purchase a building on Collinsville Avenue to open a night club in), besides some people at the Metrolink stop and a man waiting at a bus stop but I’ll have to return again on a day other than Sunday.  Anyway, the city is very cool and I really hope that some of these amazing buildings can be saved and reused.  Here is a link to my photos from the day.