St. Louis is a city with a history of struggling with diversity. Yet while there has been this struggle, there have also been plenty of opportunities for growth and education. An example of this is the neighborhood known as College Hill.
College Hill was originally the local of the St. Louis University College Farm. It was acquired in 1836. Overtime, it was subdivided. The Bissell Mansion, the Red Water Tower and the Old Water Tower are major landmarks within this district, showcasing its rich historical heritage. The housing in the area includes townhomes and four family flats, with single family homes interspersed between them.
The homes that are located near its hillside bluff are able to enjoy a beautiful view of the Mississippi river and the surrounding valleys. This beautiful neighborhood is family oriented and includes plenty of amenities for its residents.
One of the main draws is O’Fallon Park. This park was named after one of the largest land owners in the area, Colonel John O’Fallon, who was originally from Kentucky. The land was sold to the city in 1875 to create a park. It was popular for its driving ground and picnic areas throughout the last few decades of the 19th century. A lake was constructed, along with an observatory. Eventually, the lake had an island added, providing the option of boating for its residents. The park was expanded in 1917 and continues to be a draw for those looking to relax and enjoy the outdoors.
Residents can also see evidence of how their neighborhood is tied to the development of the City’s Water Works system. The Bissell Point Water Works was constructed as part of an expansion to create a better waterworks system for their growing community. Two water towers were created as part of this expansion. One is the Bissell Tower, known as the Red Water Tower. The other is the Grand Avenue Water Tower. Both of them have been added to the National Register of Historic Places. Neither one is currently in use, but they provide a testament to the growth of this city during the late 19th century. However, the Bissell Plant did not receive the same treatment. It was retired in 1960 and the land was eventually made into a garage, city incinerator and north sewage treatment plant.
College Hill is currently connected to St. Louis University, so they also enjoy the diversity of various students throughout the neighborhood. Additionally, the public school system also serves this community. Public bus lines are available and they take residents into downtown, where they have access to the Metro line and other sources of transportation. There is a small commercial district within the neighborhood located on Grand Avenue.
Thanks to the addition of Interstate 70, residents can now easily access not only downtown St. Louis, but the outlying suburbs and airport easily. St. Louis is a source of historical struggles with merging cultures, but there are still many beautiful pieces of history to be found in these family neighborhood with architectural charm.