The Rise and Fall of Mill Creek Valley St. Louis, Missouri

The Mill Creek Valley area of St. Louis, Missouri has a long and complex history. The area was originally inhabited by the Mississippian culture, but was later settled by Europeans in the 1600s. The area was first developed as a

Lost African American Neighborhood/Community 1760-1959

The Early History of Mill Creek Valley

: Before the arrival of European settlers, the Mill Creek Valley area was part of the Mississippian culture, which was a large trading network for many Native American tribes. For centuries, the area was sparsely populated, with a few scattered farmsteads and small settlements. In the 1600s, settlers from France, Germany, and other European countries arrived in the area and began to establish permanent settlements. The area became known as Mill Creek Valley in the 1700s, when a local preacher named Joseph Barringer built a mill on the banks of Mill Creek. The mill was used to grind grain and was a focal point of the area’s agricultural economy. 

The Development of Mill Creek Valley

: The Mill Creek Valley area continued to grow and develop throughout the nineteenth century, as new industries began to take hold in the area. By the late 1800s, the area had become an industrial center, with factories and warehouses lining the banks of Mill Creek and bustling with activity. The population of the area also grew in this period, with thousands of people moving to Mill Creek Valley in search of work. By the turn of the twentieth century, the area had been transformed from a rural farming community to an urban industrial district. 

The Decline of Mill Creek Valley

: In the mid-twentieth century, the Mill Creek Valley area began to decline. As other industrial centers grew, jobs and businesses left the area. The population also began to decline and many of the area’s buildings were abandoned and left to crumble. The decline of the area continued into the late twentieth century, as the local economy shrank and the area’s reputation as a dangerous, crime-ridden neighborhood increased. 

The Rebirth of Mill Creek Valley

: Despite its decline, the Mill Creek Valley area has recently seen a period of renewal and redevelopment. The area has become home to a number of new businesses, restaurants, and shops. In addition, the area’s infrastructure has been improved, including new sidewalks, streets, and other public works. The local government has also put in place policies to attract new businesses to the area and incentivize new development. 

Conclusion: The Future of Mill Creek Valley

: The Mill Creek Valley area of St. Louis has a long and complex history. The area was originally a rural farming community, but was later transformed into an industrial center. In the late twentieth century, the area experienced a period of decline, but recent revitalization efforts have seen the area reborn as an eclectic mix of residential and commercial development. The future of Mill Creek Valley is uncertain, but the area is well-positioned to continue growing as a vibrant part of St. Louis.


On Key

Related Posts

Meet Cultural Leadership: Building Leaders and Social Justice Changemakers!
The Mission of Cultural Leadership is to create a more just and equitable community by educating middle and high school students to recognize and resolve issues of privilege and injustice through the lens of the African American and Jewish experience. Our motto is that when our students see a problem, they are to grab an ally or two or three, roll up their sleeves, and get to work creating a world of inclusion and equality.