By Shannon Craig
The dawn of the 20th century in St. Louis introduced a wealth of changes to the city. Development to account for a population influx, the announcement of the city as the site of the 1904 World’s Fair, and St. Louis’ establishment as a Midwestern trade hub, all furthered the city’s first initiatives to provide social services to those in need. One of these early initiatives, the Newsboys Home and Protecterate (today known as 3010 Washington Avenue) has provided social services to city residents for more than a century, and now, thanks to a recent rehab, it will be able to continue to serve as a much-needed resource for the local population.
In 1907, Father Peter Dunne developed and built the Second Renaissance/Romanesque Revival three-story structure at 3010 Washington Avenue. The Newsboys Home and Protectorate, as Father Dunne called it, provided a home for boys who were considered a “nuisance” in Midtown St. Louis. Orphans, half-orphans and working children, ranging from four to 17 years old, were taken in to the Newsboys Home and Protectorate for hot meals, shelter and an education in trade. The facility hosted stables, areas for bootblacking, a print shop and a music hall, along with a number of shared dormitories, a laundry and a chapel. At the time, the social and physical structure of the facility was lauded as “a home rather than an institution,” a commendable distinction in a time when overcrowded group homes were considered the norm.... Read More →