Chinatown, St. Louis
|St. Louis Chinatown|
|Neighborhood of St. Louis|
New and old Busch Stadiums, at the location of the old Chinatown
|Area code(s)||Area code 314|
Chinatown in St. Louis, Missouri (also called Hop Alley) was a Chinatown near Downtown St. Louis that existed from 1869 until its demolition for Busch Memorial Stadium in 1966. While in existence, it was bounded by Seventh, Tenth, Walnut and Chestnut streets. Although the original St. Louis Chinatown no longer exists, efforts have been made toward establishing a new Chinatown in nearby University City, Missouri.
Original St. Louis Chinatown
The first Chinese immigrant to St. Louis was Alla Lee, born in Ningbo near Shanghai, who arrived in the city in 1857. Lee remained the only Chinese immigrant until 1869, when a group of about 250 immigrants (mostly men) arrived seeking factory work. In January 1870, another group of Chinese immigrants arrived, including some women. By 1900, the immigrant population of St. Louis Chinatown had settled at between 300 and 400. Chinatown established itself as the home to Chinese hand laundries, which in turn represented more than half of the city's laundry facilities. Other businesses included groceries, restaurants, tea shops, barber shops, and opium dens. Between 1958 and the mid-1960s, Chinatown was condemned and demolished for urban renewal and to make space for Busch Memorial Stadium.
A number of Asian grocery stores and restaurants exist along Olive Boulevard between I-170 and Skinker Boulevard in University City, Missouri. The route contains mostly Chinese businesses, rather than residents. Although efforts were made to designate part of the area as "Chinatown", surrounding community members objected to the proposals. Also, the Missouri Department of Transportation has jurisdiction over part of Olive Boulevard and does not permit decorative archways or gateways spanning the roadway, as can be seen in other Chinatowns. As a result, there is no officially designated Chinatown in the St. Louis area.
- History of St. Louis, Missouri
- List of Chinatowns in the United States
- Chinatown, Boston, a Chinatown in a city of similar size to St. Louis
- Chinatown, Chicago, the large nearby Chinatown
- Organization of Chinese Americans, a group formed in the early 1970s in St. Louis
- Ling, 16.
- Virtual St. Louis: Chinatown Web site
- University City Olive Boulevard Design Guidelines
- Ling, 26.
- Ling, 27.
- Ling, 30.
- Ling, 36.
- Ling, 43.
- Riverfront Times, July 20, 2005.
- KPLR, October 20, 2010.
- Friswold, Paul; Alison Sieloff (July 20, 2005). "This Week's Day by Day Picks". Riverfront Times (St. Louis, Missouri). Retrieved Jan 16, 2011.
- Ling, Huping (2004). Chinese St. Louis: From enclave to cultural community. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Temple University Press.
- "Olive Boulevard Design Guidelines" (Press release). University City, Missouri. January 2009. Retrieved Jan 16, 2011.
- Schankman, Paul (October 20, 2010). "Chinese Immigrants in St. Louis". KPLR (St. Louis, Missouri: KPLR). Retrieved Jan 17, 2011.
- "Virtual St. Louis: Chinatown Node". University of Missouri-St. Louis. March 2004. Retrieved Jan 16, 2011.