While I typically contain my research to St. Louis City, due to the fact that the Recorder of Deeds has put priority in conserving and archiving historical records (applause), my realtor friend called me the other day raving about this hidden gem in unincorporated St. Louis County near St. Ann. She described a 1960s ranch complete with pool, poolhouse, studio, sunken white tiled shower, etc. – she said it looked as if Sammy Davis Jr. could have hung there – very retro! So of course she was curious as to any info I could dig up for her clients and of course I obliged…
After an hour or so of digging, I found that the house had belonged to Don and Ruth Leonard, of Leonard Masonry. The more I dug, the cooler it got – Leonard Masonry did the Eagleton Federal Courthouse, Citygarden, Grand Basin restoration, most of Wash U campus, among many other award-winning projects!
When I called my friend with the findings, I first asked if there was any interesting brickwork or stonework on the property. She told me about the gorgeous stone wall that surrounded the pool, and 2 brick archways – then I spilled the beans about the residents! She couldn’t believe that no one was marketing this unique aspect of the house and suggested that I contact the listing agent. (her clients ended up writing a contract on another property, unfortunately)
Since the house is showing age, careful, considerate renovations should take place and we hoped that whoever bought the property would honor it’s historical value. That is a valid concern and something which my research, coupled with historic preservationists, can ensure. I’ll keep my fingers crossed.