Maplewood History: 1915 Mitchell Place – Dogtown


Generally I confine my investigations to within the boundaries of our fair city, but now and then a subject of exceptional interest comes along so I make an exception.  This is one of those as were my last two posts about the De Soto Run bicycle challenge.  I really strayed beyond our borders for those two.  I was able to confirm that John W. Rannells, who once occupied the same terra firma as we do now, won a bicycle race.  I was not able to determine that he ever rode the De Soto Run.  I did discover that I had unknowingly ridden a very small part of the De Soto Run when I was a child living nearby.  Therefore the only Maplewood connection to the De Soto Run is me.  That’s it.  So far.

Regular readers will recognize by now Mary Piles’ name.  She has contributed much to this space in her role as the curator of things historical at CNB-STL. Just like me she often finds things of interest that have nothing to do with whatever she was actually searching for.  This post is one of those.

Very cool, Mary.  What a loss.  The original house on that site was very beautiful.  Is that image from the National Archives?  Thank you for sharing this with us.

Christmas is almost upon us.  For the first 70 years of my life, my parents were part of our family’s annual celebration.  This is the first year that neither of them will be here. We will all be sad but we know how lucky we’ve been and how lucky we are to still have each other. My family will get together by Zoom this year.  The pandemic makes it too dangerous to gather.

I wish you all a Merry Christmas.  Be safe.

Doug Houser      December 22, 2020


    • I noticed them, Sam. It sure does look like the one is wearing a mask although I don’t know why she would be. Hay fever? I wonder why they are wearing black.

  1. March 28, 1814-1817: America Bayless born in Kentucky.
    Feb 18, 1815-1819: Stanislaus Mitchell born in Ripley, Ohio.
    December 3, 1840: Stanislaus and America married in Mason County, Kentucky.
    March 19, 1844: Son Stephen Bayless born in Kentucky.
    About 1846: Son William Ignatius born in Kentucky.
    Febuary 26, 1849: Daughter Mary E. born in Kentucky.
    August 9, 1850: US Census finds Stanislaus’ household living in Mason Co., Kentucky. His occupation was Master Brickmason.
    October 12, 1851: Son Leonard F. born in Kentucky.
    October 6, 1855: Son Stanislaus Jr. born in Kentucky.
    July 16, 1860: US Census finds Stanislaus’ household living in Mason Co., Kentucky. His occupation listed as Merchant and Farming.
    About 1863: Daughter Bridie born in Missouri.
    July 1, 1870: US Census finds Stanislaus’ household living in the Central Township of St. Louis Co., Missouri. His occupation is listed as Superintendent Tile Roof Manufacturer.
    About 1870: According to 1894 news article, Stanislaus moved to 6926 Mitchell Ave. 24 years ago, where he cleared forest to build his current home.
    May 28, 1879: Daughter Birdie died in St. Louis.
    June 2, 1880: US Census finds Stanislaus’ household living in St. Louis City on Plateau Ave. (now Mitchell Ave.). His occupation was Fire Brick and Tile Manufacturer.
    November 13, 1880: US Census finds Stanislaus’ household living in St. Louis City, no street. His occupation is listed as “Works in Clay”.
    June 20, 1892: Son Stephen Bayless died in St. Louis. Buried in Calvary Cemetery.
    August 22, 1896: Stanislaus died and is buried in Calvary Cemetery, St. Louis City, Missouri.
    April 27, 1897: Wife America died and is buried in Calvary Cemetery, St. Louis City, Missouri.
    1898: STL Business Directory shows brothers Leonard and Stanislaus Jr. living at 6926 Mitchell Ave.
    June 13 or 14, 1900: US Census finds siblings Leonard, Stanislaus Jr. and Mary E. plus a female servant all living at 6926 Mitchell Ave.
    1905: Son William and wife Mae died in Reno, Nevada days apart. They were survived by one son named Stanislaus.
    April 29, 1910: US Census finds siblings Leonard, Stanislaus Jr. and Mary E. all living at 6926 Mitchell Ave.
    July 1, 1914: Daughter Mary Elizabeth died in St. Louis. Buried in Calvary Cemetery. Home address listed as 1915 America Ave. (now Mitchell Place).
    May 5, 1915: Son Leonard F. died in St. Louis. Buried in Calvary Cemetery. Home address listed as 1915 America Ave. (now Mitchell Place).
    October 7, 1918: Stanislaus Jr. married widow Annie S. (nee. Marshall) Berry in Richmond Heights.
    January 6 or 7, 1920: US Census finds Stanislaus Jr. living with wife Annie and 2 servants at 1915 America Place (now Mitchell Place).
    August 26, 1922: Son Stanislaus Jr. died in St. Louis. Buried in Valhalla Cemetery. Home address listed as 1915 America Ave. (now Mitchell Place).
    December 27, 1924: Stanislaus Jr.’s Will is overturned by jury trial leaving all of his estate (valued at $118,000) to family and orphaned nephew Stanislaus (son of William Ignatius and Mae Mitchell) instead of half the estate going to wife Annie.
    July 20, 1926: Annie S. Mitchell, wife of Stanislaus Jr., died. Buried in Valhalla Cemetery. She was the daughter of Merritt H. and Mary C. (nee. Sutton) Marshall of Maplewood.

    • Wow! Dave, that’s awesome. Do you use How cool that you could find when the house was built, 1870 and the connection to the Sutton family in Maplewood. How very interesting all of this is. Thank you very much. Merry Christmas.

      • Thanks Doug. I am not a member of Not a fan of services that require people pay for access to digital documents that are already in the public domain. So, I only use websites and databases that are free for the public to access.

        Also, few thoughts about the old Mitchell house. First, I find it odd that the house was wood siding not brick. But if you look at the 1870 US Census occupation description for Stanislaus it says Roof Tile Manufacturer. The house certainly looks like it has clay roof tiles at least. Seems like maybe the Mitchell’s weren’t making bricks until after 1870? Still kinda interesting a Master Brickmason didn’t build a brick house?

        I am not totally convinced the house in the photo, which is almost certainly the 6926 Mitchell Ave. house, is also the same house that was at 1915 America Place. I tried to find proof but have not. The 1883 Hopkins Atlas has on plate 41 the 6926 Mitchell Ave. house placed closer to what would now be 1906/1908 Mitchell Place? Nonetheless, the circa 1870 Mitchell house in the picture is long gone. Merry Christmas.

    • i found it interesting that the 1920 census show them living with 2 servants. I have heard that many of the bigger older homes had servants quarters but did not realize that they were listed on the census roles. That sounds like they had a living quarters for them to be there not living somewhere lese and traveling to the house each day for work. Is that a fair assessment?

      • I’m no expert on this, Mark. My wife and I clean our own house. But what you’re saying certainly sounds right.

        • Doug, my mother worked in service (maid, nanny, companion, All 3 at different families) 2 were in Clayton one in U City. She lived in, it was during the depression, she started in service at 14 and worked until she was in her early 20s. This was before she met my father. One family were the Seligs (they had furniture stores in St Louis) There were many servants in the Seligs home. Late 1930’s Early 40’s. Servants had to live in, they worked so many hours you couldn’t afford the neighborhood to live in, the street cars took too long to travel from poor neighborhood to the wealthy. Also it was a perk of your job to not have to pay for rent, meals or uniforms. At a time when so many were going hungry, it was a great job, at least you got to eat. Mrs Selig also taught my mother elocution, she said she was afraid her children would be influenced by her poor ability to speak. My mother spoke perfect English ( Thank you Mrs Selig) ( I should write a book). LOL Have a wonderful new year.

          • You certainly should write a book, Mary. Thanks for filling in a lot of the blanks on this one. Happy New Year to you as well.

  2. I think those photos are from the Missouri Historical Society online archive. I cant believe how beautiful that lawn is. I’m longing for the day I can get out and visit again, I miss people. I hope you all have a safe holiday, I know I will appreciate the dear people I come across a little more when this is over. I miss hugs, and handshakes, I basically just miss all of you. Stay safe.

    • Hey Mary, That lawn looks like the green on a golf course. All the better to play croquet on, I suppose. I think the house is very beautiful. I’d be curious to know when it was built. The one first floor window that we can see looks like it is two-over-two panes of glass which is newer than six-over-six, just saying. The chimneys and some of the porch ornament looks like later Victorian. Don’t you think the overall design looks more like mid-1800’s? Especially with those small second floor windows on the facade. I’d like to hear from the experts on this one. What are we looking at? Like you, I look forward to when we will no longer have to fear being touched by another human being who is outside of our household. Thanks for all of this. I’ll provide a link that shows the homes of some of Mr. Mitchell’s neighbors.

    • You are welcome, Nancy. That image certainly depicts the good ol’ days…if you were rich. I wonder what sort of living quarters some of his workers at the Mitchell Clay Manufacturing Co. had? I wonder what their jobs were like? But I know what you mean, Nancy. The good ol’ days are in or minds. Thanks for your comment.

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