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What Are Buildings Made Of?

Wood in St Louis buildings

The earliest wood buildings in St. Louis - the log structures built by the fur traders - were mostly demolished as the original townsite became a commercial area. Most of the early frame houses that remain in the City are in Carondelet, but the majority of these have been covered with modern siding so you can't tell what they're really made of. There is another good cluster of late nineteenth century frame houses in the Clifton Heights neighborhood. Because of the fear of fire, most houses after the mid-1850s were not made of wood - the ones which remain are most often found near the city limits.

Lyle MansionThe antebellum Lyle Mansion in Carondelet Park is the oldest frame house in the City.

Kennon House The Kennon House in Carondelet dates from 1868.

19th century house in Shaw neighborhood The wood of this 19th century house in the Shaw neighborhood was hidden under asphalt siding until recently.

Shingle style house on West Cabanne Place Some of the houses on West Cabanne Place are built in the Shingle Style, which was popular on the East Coast in the 1880s.

Brick house with painted wooden porch and window Even if there aren't many whole houses made of wood, just about every house in St. Louis uses wood both inside and out. On the exterior of houses, wood is usually painted to protect it from the weather. This porch and window have lasted over a hundred years because they have been protected from rot with paint.

Shiny wood floor and wood molding One of the reasons that people admire the old houses of St. Louis is because of the woodwork inside - including molding (shaped wood strips used on walls, around doors, etc.) and wood floors.

wood Wood clay Clay stone Stone Identify It! Identify It!

More About Wood

Wood Home
How a tree becomes a building

Related Links

Lyle Mansion
Shaw Historic District



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This site was made possible by: the City of St. Louis Planning and Urban Design Agency and
the City of St. Louis Community Information Network.

This site was funded in part by Federal funds administered by the Missouri State Historical Preservation Office, Missouri Department of Natural Resources, The National Park Service, and the U.S. Department of the Interior.

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