The building at 2811 Chippewa Street was acquired by South Side Spaces in May 2014 at a tax sale. Built in the 1890s, this century old structure on Chippewa is a bit of an oddity in St. Louis. The uncommonly large setback, stucco covered columns, and expansive wrap-around porch are unusual for the area. The renovation concept for the building was simple – a casual spot with outdoor seating where friends and neighbors could gather and grab a beer.
In June 2016, when the concept for “Homestead” was all but finalized, the building was set ablaze. Neighbors alerted authorities and South Side Spaces to the fire and despite the fire department’s best efforts, the building was charred and compromised. The roof had collapsed, the west wall crumbled. Floors, ceilings, and walls had deteriorated or caved in.
A Eulogy on Chippewa
2811 Chippewa (1891-2016) died Tuesday evening June 14th, 2016 following a battle with arsonists in St. Louis, MO at the age of 125. 2811 Chippewa is survived by 2817 Chippewa and 2807 Chippewa. Visitation will be held Friday, 5pm at 2811 Chippewa. Whiskey will be served. Contributions in memory of 2811 Chippewa may be made to the Greater Gravois Park Neighborhood Association, 3407 S Jefferson Ave, St. Louis, MO 63118. Chippewa resident Michael Allen will give a eulogy at 5:30pm.
Neighbors gathered to hear a eulogy and mourn the loss of this structure.
Michael Allen of the Preservation Research Office. Photo by Danny Wicentowski, Riverfront Times.
A New Future for Homestead
Today, South Side Spaces is exploring options to save 2811 Chippewa Street. While the exact plan is still in the works, the new Homestead concept is similar to the original – a landmark on Chippewa and a gathering place for South City residents.