Village History

Excerpt from St. Clair County History, (Philadelphia: Brink, McDonough, and Company, 1881)


The village of East Carondelet is situated in the central western part of Prairie du Pont precinct, on the line of the narrow guage [sic] and the East St. Louis and East Carondelet railoads [sic], and about a quarter of a mile east of the Mississippi. The plat is in the form of a rectangle, and lies on both sides of Prairie du Pont creek. It was established on the Prairie du Pont common fields, in the year 1872, Andrew Donnan platted the first village lots. The same year (1872) two additions were made to the town, one by Donnan and Henderson, the other by Christian Keoln. In 1876 another addition was made by Frank Ricker.

The first house was built by J. L. Strider in 1872. It was a frame building, story and a half, and used for a dwelling. The first store was kept by Messrs. Green & Jackson, and was situated on State Avenue, south-east of the Narrow Gauge railroad. L. G. Cross was the first to establish a wagon manufactory and blacksmith shop. It was built in 1873, and is situated on State street, near Prairie du Pont creek. Mr. Cross is still doing business on the old site. The first hotel was built by Volantine Eustch, in 1872, and was conducted by him with satisfaction to the public until 1875, when it was destroyed by fire. F. S. Mack & Co. erected the first flouring mill in 1876. It was a steam mill, four story frame with stone foundation, and cost $10,000. It had three run of burrs, and a capacity for grinding seventy-five barrels per day. It was situated on State avenue, near the Narrow Gauge railroad depot, and was destroyed by fire in 1880. The first post­office was kept by S. H. Parker, in the Narrow Gauge railroad depot. The first church was built by the Catholics in 1873. It was a frame building, 40×60, and cost $3000. It was completely destroyed by a wind storm, which occurred in 1876. The school­house was built in 1876, at a cost of upwards of $1200. It is a frame house, and seated with the latest improved furniture. Prior to the building of this house, the school was taught in the colored log church, north of the creek, not far from the Conlogue railroad; J. W. McCormic was the first teacher. James N. Carlton was elected first Justice of the Peace, and heard his first case in the. depot of the Narrow Gauge railway.


The village of East Carondelet can boast of one of the largest and most complete Blast Furnaces in the West, and is owned by Meier & Co. of St. Louis. It is situated a little north of the village, and occupies one hundred acres of ground, including buildings, railway, and switches. The works contain three engines of one hundred tons weight each; two furnaces with four large Whitehall hot-air blasts to each furnace. The chimney is two hundred and three and a half feet high, and is said to be the tallest chimney in the United States. It is twenty-eight feet in diameter at the base, and octagonal in in form to the height of about twenty-five feet, where it assumes a rotund shape, and gently tapers to the summit. It took nearly one million bricks to complete it. The works cost upwards of two million dollars, and give employment to more than three hundred hands. Several car-loads of pigs are cast daily, and, shipped to St. Louis and other cities. The company has constructed its own stock railroads to connect the works with the Mississippi river, on the one side, and the C. & St. L. Narrow Gauge, and the E. St. L. & E. Carondelet railways on the other. SMITH’S ICE HOUSES. These houses were constructed in 1880-1, and are situated on the river bank, about half a mile north-west of the village. The building is one hundred and sixty feet square, covered with a double roof, and is thirty-six feet in height. It cost $25,000, and will hold twenty-five thousand tons of ice.