Nice stay in a Victorian cottage in St. Louis Missouri with lots of history
I have been lucky enough to stay at a beautiful Victorian style cottage in the spring of this year. The early American history surrounding this cottage astounds me. This cottage was built Just shy of 30 years after the American Civil War. And 9 years before the St Louis Worlds Fair. The cottage is part of one of the oldest subdivisions in the country and in the St Louis areas. It was built 1895 and was part of 15 built as summer homes for the wealthiest of wealthy to cool off, frolic, and play near and on the Meramac River.
The mineral springs that were here have been covered up and long ago forgotten now. The cottage was part of this 500-acre Meramec Highlands tract of land, formerly an exclusive 1890’s summer resort and health spa. Where the rich famous and infamous could cool off, hang and hide out. Back in mid 1800s There were grand hotels and boat cruses, dance halls and rumored “houses of ladies,” all along the Meramec river. West of the station, remains the 1883 railroad tunnel. In 1894 the resort’s dance hall, named the Pagoda, was built over the tunnel. An observation deck atop the Pagoda provided visitors with a scenic view of the Meramec River Valley. Up the street from the station, still standing after all these years, you can find the resort’s general store where the gangster “Pretty Boy” Floyd hid out in 1925 during the resort’s slow and declining days. Of the 15 built cottages 13 remain.
Back in the day… according to The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, June, 1895 “There is no question that the Highlands Inn is one of the finest summer houses in the country, fully worthy of its picturesque surroundings. It is an ideal country home, provided with all the modern appurtenances of comfort and luxury, and the social center of the pleasure seeking community… No malaria. No heat. No dust. No mosquitoes. No housekeeping. No servant troubles.” — Rates ranged from $15-17.50 for cottages and inn alike, including meals. So just a thought for a moment… if a house could tell a tale what grand stories it could tell you?