Thursday, April 19, 2007

What A View

I was able to take look today at the pics from inside the Mullanphy Emigrant Home from my tour on Monday. I saw it in person obviously, but they reminded me how awesome the view is from the second and third floors. I have always thought that the best view of the skyline came from the north, and the pictures definitely confirm this. The density just seems to cover the whole horizon from east to west. I would love to wake up to the view out the third floor every morning. The views to the other directions, while not quite the same, show the urban character of the city as well as anywhere. St. Louis is a pretty impressive city from the Mullanphy vantage point. Just imagine a Metrolink line coming up the street below, and all of the empty lots infilled with high density urban buildings full of new residents and retail. With some time and commitment, St. Louis will be known worldwide for it's comeback to status of one of the greats. Everything is there just waiting for those of us with visions of grandeur to take the initiative.

There's something about standing in that crumbling building that just shot my optimism through the roof (which would not be a good thing to happen while standing in a building that is open on three sides). I don't know if it is just me living in a dream world, but I have this sense that everything will turn out beyond anything anyone could have imagined just a year ago.

A few pictures are included in this post, many more can be viewed here.

Downtown as seen from Mullanphy

We can't explain it either

Old electrical equipment

Yours truly

Monday, April 16, 2007

I'm Legal

I've finally made it to 21, and I gotta say that it really doesn't feel any different. I didn't even get asked for my ID at lunch. I guess I get to enjoy the little bit of time I have left in college with the above 21 crowd. 1 month to party it up legally. Should be fun.

I got my interior "tour" of the Mullanphy Building today. The views are truly incredible. My camera decided to stop functioning correctly after 2 pics (from the outside no less), so I will post pics on Wednesday when I can get copies of Sean Thomas' pics. There are a couple with me up against the edge of the south wall and the Arch and skyline behind. I would love to wake up to that every morning. E.M. Harris will be working on stabilization again this week. A boom lift and lumber has already been dropped off, and more shoring for the sagging floor joists will be provided. The last two weeks have been very successful for fundraising, but a lot more is still needed. Head over to to find out more about how you can help out.

Off to have a bit of fun. Hopefully I'm still alive tomorrow.

Friday, April 13, 2007

New (Old) Photo of Mullanphy

A quick update before I pass out (plus I wanted to make a Friday the 13th posting). If you haven't noticed yet, Sean Thomas, Executive Director of the Old North St. Louis Restoration Group, has been making daily updates for the last 13 days on the New old North Blog as part of his "45 days in Old North." He has had many various postings about the neighborhood such as the upcoming house tour or highlighting some of the new construction, with the most recent being on the Mullanphy Emigrant Home. It's partially a post promoting the fundrasier tomorrow at the Schlafly Bottleworks, but it also contains a previously undiscovered picture. One of the tasks for us interns at the office on Wednesday was to contact the St. Louis Public Schools to see if they had any info concerning the Building from when it was known as Douglas School, and apparently Mullanphy School as well. Turns out that there was some info, including a picture from 1890. SLPS was gracious enough to share the photo with the Restoration Group. They have asked that it not be reproduced or republished without permission, but you can take a look at the New Old North Blog. The photo is from a different angle as well. It is oriented towards the south east, an angle previously unseen in historical photos.

My 21st birthday present from the Restoration Group is an interior tour on Monday, so a post with lots of pics from inside will be coming next week once I sober up...

Saturday, April 07, 2007

The Mullanphy Challenge

I would like to challenge every reader of this blog right now. By now you have probably seen at least a small blurb about the effort to raise the necessary funds to stabilize and ultimately redevelop the Mullanphy Emigrant Home in Old North St. Louis. This is an effort that needs to involve all of St. Louis. Make a small (or large) tax deductible donation. Tell all of your friends about the effort. Ask your rich relatives to consider making a contribution. Just get the word out. I want to see every urban blog from St. Louis and beyond with a post about the Mullanphy preservation effort and how others can help. Have an idea for a fundraiser? Let the Old North St. Louis Restoration group know about it and start planning. The opportunities for you to become involved are endless. The $350,000 goal may seem out of reach, but if everyone works together we can reach the goal before we lose the Mullanphy Emigrant Home forever.

Among the upcoming events are an emergency fundraiser on April 14 at the Schlafly Bottleworks (see flier below), a benefit concert sponsored by Landmarks at Christ Church Cathedral on May 16, and more to be announced. Stay tuned for more information about the concert and other events. For now, here is the information on the fundraiser for next Saturday.

To be held at: Schlafly Bottleworks

7260 Southwest Ave. Maplewood, MO 63143

Google Map Link:

Saturday, April 14th, 5-7:30 PM

Donation range: $50...$500...$350,000

If you need more information send an email to or give the Old North St. Louis Restoration Group a call at 314-241-5031.

We may not have big media attention yet, but a grassroots effort is what this is all about. This is more than this one building. This is people taking a stake in our own community, working together to preserve our past, and build a bright future. Something like this may never have been attempted before, but we have a chance to do something great. Will we seize the moment, or will we let another piece of our collective history fade into oblivion?

More Info:

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Another Mullanphy Update

The New Old North Blog has a post updating the status of the Mullanphy Building. Read it here. Your help is still greatly needed, and quickly.