St. Louis' Gay History On Display at Cherokee Street Gallery Before Big Move to Museum

Categories: History, LGBT

Photos courtesy of PHD Gallery
Lee Maynard and a Cher-inspired feathered Indian costume from 1973.
Remember the gay-history exhibit coming to the Missouri History Museum? The one that revealed the homophobic worst in St. Louis' online commenters?

Turns out, there's no need to wait for the history museum to catalog and archive before seeing Steven Brawley's collection of historical LGBT artifacts reaching back six decades. A sampling of the collection is on display at the phd gallery's exhibition, "A History of Queer: Selections from the St. Louis LGBT History Project," through February -- one final stop before officially becoming part of the museum's conservancy.

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10 Places to Hold St. Louis' 250th Birthday Celebration That Aren't Forest Park

Categories: History

Forest Park Forever
Forest Park's World's Fair Pavilion.
Don't get us wrong: Forest Park is a jewel.

Larger than Central Park, our urban oasis sees more visitors each year than the Gateway Arch and Busch Stadium combined. We totally understand why folks organizing St. Louis' 250th birthday party want to host it at Forest Park over Valentine's Day weekend.

What if -- just hang in there with us for a minute -- we held St. Louis' 250th anniversary in a place that wasn't wilderness when the city was founded? What if we chose a location closer to the heart of the city instead of a park founded 112 years later?

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The Best Homophobic Freak-Outs Over the LGBT Exhibit at Missouri History Museum

Categories: History, LGBT

bark on flickr
Missouri is on the verge of launching the first mainstream queer museum collection in the region, prompting some epic freak-outs from anti-LGBT commenters on Facebook.

The collection of gay St. Louis historical artifacts -- including drag-queen outfits, protest signs, pride-parade souvenirs and more from the last 60 years -- sits in Steven Brawley's basement for now, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

The Missouri History Museum is eyeing the piles of memorabilia, called the St. Louis LGBT History Project, for a queer history exhibit.

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Why Don't We Hang at the Arch More? 5 Amazing Ideas to Get St. Louis to the Gateway

Categories: History

Dougtone on Flickr
We should go here more.
A particularly tech-savvy park ranger is behind a growing online conversation over attracting more people to the riverfront for events at the Gateway Arch.

"National Park Service wants you to come hang out at the park," posts law enforcement ranger Coty Stief on Reddit. "What kind of programs would you like to see us host to accomplish that?"

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Local Photographer "Blends" Old St. Louis With New in These Photos

Categories: History

Francis Horton
Oftentimes the history of a city can be drowned out and forgotten by the present. But Francis Horton decided to create a reminder of the past by blending it with the present.

In these seven photos, Horton, a 30-year-old IT professional, journalist, photographer, and army veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, found historical photos of different locations in St. Louis and used Photoshop to blend them with new photos. The result is haunting and fascinating.

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Cab Driver David Riordan is the Keeper of St. Louis' Haunted History

Categories: History

Photos by Benjamin Hoste
David Riordan, the man behind tours of haunted St. Louis
Ghosts are said to roam St. Louis' riverfront where thousands have succumbed to cholera, duels and other untimely deaths, and, for a price, David Riordan -- a former commodities-baron-slash-lawyer-slash-millionaire-turned-cab-driver -- will be your guide.

Walking through Laclede's Landing at night is scary enough without the promise of spooky stories. Riordan takes tourists under subway tracks and through dark alleyways near the Gateway Arch, corners typical St. Louisans avoid at night.

"If someone comes out of the woods with a chainsaw, run like hell; it's the real thing," Riordan tells his tours.

A seventh-generation St. Louisan, Riordan meets groups at Morgan Street Brewery, then guides them to spots like Clamorgan Alley, which Riordan calls "the most haunted place in St. Louis by far," where thousands of bodies were stacked during an 1849 cholera outbreak until Irish immigrant workers moved them across town.

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Portraits of the Spooky, Abandoned Ballroom in the Jefferson Arms (PHOTOS)

Categories: History

Courtesy Michael Allen
Your credit's fine, Mr. Torrance.

"Hi, Lloyd. Little slow tonight, idn't it?"

Yes, it is Mr. Torrance. That's because since roughly the 1950s, the Gold Room at the Hotel Jefferson -- later renamed the Jefferson Arms when it became senior housing -- was essentially shut down. And though hidden and dilapidated, the spacious room appears roughly the same as it did some 80 years ago when it was declared "brilliantly decorated with gold the predominating color" in an advertisement in the Belleville News-Democrat in 1928.

That's all according to Michael R. Allen, who wrote a wonderful post about it on his blog for the Preservation Research Office. Click through to see a collection of haunting portraits of the room. Happy Halloween, Mr. Torrance.

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Travel Channel's Ghost Adventures Investigates St. Louis Exorcist House; Hears Demons

Categories: History, Media

Travel Channel
Ghost Adventures stars Aaron Goodwin, Zak Bagans and Nick Groff outside the St. Louis "Exorcist House."
Ghost Adventures airs its 100th episode October 4 with an examination of the St. Louis "Exorcist House." And for the stars of the popular Travel Channel program, the investigation was more than just a milestone. It was one of their eeriest filmings to date.

"For me, personally, this is one of the scariest things we've encountered or captured," Ghost Adventures Nick Groff tells Daily RFT. "I still get chills."

For those unfamiliar with the back story of the Exorcist House, in 1949 a thirteen-year-old boy from suburban Washington D.C. traveled to St. Louis after experiencing hallucinations and fits. Doctors thought a change of scenery might help. It didn't.

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St. Louis' 250th Birthday: City Was Originally Called "Pain Court," Mayor Suggests Renaming

Categories: History, News

Pierre Laclede, founder of St. Louis.
Did you know that St. Louis is turning 250 next year? In honor of the semiquincentennial -- yes, that is apparently a real word -- city leaders and civic groups are preparing for a series of anniversary events.

Mayor Francis Slay has devoted his weekly online poll to the occasion "to calibrate your enthusiasm for a year-long party" next year to celebrate the founding of St. Louis by Pierre Laclede in 1764.

One of his questions, however, raises a rather odd fact in the city's founding: Some records apparently show that St. Louis was originally named "Pain Court." And in honor of that historical fact, Slay suggests maybe we want to consider changing the name of the city.

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Cupples 7: City Says Historic St. Louis Site Will Be Demolished Unless a Developer Steps Up

Cupples 7.
Unless a developer steps up, the historic Cupples 7 building in downtown St. Louis will soon be demolished.

And even if developers do emerge, they would need to have a solid plan to stabilize the site immediately -- or else it will have to come down. So says the city, which doesn't own the site, but has determined that the structure has become a serious safety hazard.

Still, the mayor's office and local preservationists are still hoping that someone -- with funding and a plan -- comes forward.

"We will welcome them until the wrecking ball swings," Maggie Crane, spokeswoman for Mayor Francis Slay, tells Daily RFT.

Will anyone be able to stop the demolition?

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