Work took me to the Rome of the West - Mound City - Gateway to the West a.k.a. St. Louis, MO in the last week of September. After taking a look at the dramatic confluence of the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers, exploring the river town of Alton, IL, and climbing the mysterious mounds of Cahokia; I crossed the Mississippi into St. Louis proper. There was a lot to see:
On the banks of the Mississippi
The Eads Bridge, 1874
St. Louis from the top of the Gateway Arch:
The Old St. Louis County Courthouse below - site of the Dred Scott trials.
Busch Stadium where St. Louis won the World Series several weeks later.
I took an early morning run through Forest Park across the street from my hotel http://www.forestparkforever.org/:
The St. Louis Art Museum http://www.slam.org/
Mysteries of the Masonic Temple:
Midwestern Optimists - "Show Me!"
The St. Louis house where Scott Joplin lived from 1900 to 1903: http://mostateparks.com/park/scott-joplin-house-state-historic-site
Scott Joplin is buried a mile from where I live in Astoria - an odd coincidence that his final resting place is in an Episcopalian cemetery on the ragged edge of Astoria and Elmhurst, Queens surrounded by neighborhood German and Greek immigrants' headstones. He died at 49 unappreciated and bankrupt in the Manhattan State hospital and was buried in a paupers grave in St. Michael's Cemetery.
It wasn't until 1974, with the revival of interest in ragtime music, that his remarkable achievements were acknowledged and he was finally honored with a grave marker. If you're ever in a taxi on the way to LaGuardia on the Grand Central Parkway, look to the right just before passing the Bulova Watch Building and send Mr. Joplin some warm thoughts.
Abandoned buildings in the block behind the Scott Joplin House:
Louis Sullivan's trailblazing skyscraper, the Wainwright Building, built in 1891:
Now a state office builidng and in sad disrepair:
Gateway Arch - one of THE most beautiful structures in America. Architect Eero Saarinen's triumph:
The outside is modern, timeless, and pure. The inside is very 1967.
And not for the claustrophobic:
At the apex:
(btw: not every "stitch-assisted" photo works out quite as expected!):
St. Louis' Union Station:
San Francisco St. Louis New York
St. Louis by night: