Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

History, Heritage of City to Be Written with Grant Area Was Chosen Because of Airport Buyouts

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

History, Heritage of City to Be Written with Grant Area Was Chosen Because of Airport Buyouts

Article excerpt

A proposal to document the history and heritage of Kinloch will become possible with a grant from the Missouri Humanities Council's "Scholar-in-Residence" program.

The study will highlight some of the factors that have influenced Kinloch's history, including the arrival of former slaves after the Civil War, the 1917 race riots in East St. Louis, the construction of Interstate 170 and the expansion of Lambert Airport.

The grant was awarded to the Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society, Landon Cheek Chapter, after more than seven months of planning.

Project Director and chapter Vice President William H. Gillispie said one of the goals of the organization was to document the histories of various black communities in St. Louis that emerged after the Civil War, including Kinloch, Meacham Park, Robertson and a city neighborhood known as "The Ville."

Gillispie said that Kinloch was chosen first because of concern about airport expansion and the massive buyout of homes in Kinloch.

"The scattering of Kinloch residents from the airport's buyout makes finding information more difficult, as people are a valuable source for providing historical data about families, social and religious organizations, businesses and schools," Gillispie said.

"Our mission is to capture data and consolidate it and also to make sure no more information is lost," Gillispie added.

Gillispie would like to see some of Kinloch's culture remain alive.

"Even though the airport plans to expand, we would like to see certain buildings preserved, including churches that are still active in Kinloch," Gillispie said.

Dr. Gary R. Kremer, professor of history at William Woods College in Fulton, Mo., will participate as the scholar-in-residence in this project.

Kremer has taught at William Woods College for 16 years and served as Missouri state archivist from January 1987 to August 1991. …

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