Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Historical Association Loses Home; `No Place to Go,' Chairwoman Says

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Historical Association Loses Home; `No Place to Go,' Chairwoman Says

Article excerpt

The Normandy Area Historical Association needs a home.

"We have no place to go," said Eleanore Waldt, association chairwoman.

As of today the association operates out of P.O. Box 5636, 7450 Natural Bridge, Normandy, Mo. 63121. Until November, the association had been based for almost 30 years in donated space at the Wilson Price Hunt house, a white, turn-of-the-century mansion at 7717 Natural Bridge Road. When McLaughlin Group Inc bought the building last year, they converted the first-floor space into real estate offices. "We were forced to leave," said Waldt. The non-profit association scurried for space to store its possessions. A baby grand piano that had been in the parlor went to a board member's home. Oriental rugs and other fine furnishings got stored in a nearby church rectory and a funeral home's basement. More cartons went to Waldt's house in Bel-Nor. "We packed it all up and scattered it all over," said Waldt. Five months later the association still searches for an address it can afford on a budget shorter than a shoestring. The association's only income comes from annual membership dues that range from $10 to $100. The association counts almost 100 members, many with ZIP codes outside the St. Louis area. "They grew up here, went to school here, married and moved," said Waldt. "But they stay connected. People have very strong ties to the Normandy area." Waldt said that residents who have moved stay emotionally attached because of the pride they feel for Normandy. "It was a frontier and the opening of suburban living," said Waldt referring to early rail lines that brought residents and visitors from the city of St. Louis. Without a home, the association's future could be in jeopardy, Waldt fears. "Just like Overland and Ferguson, we need a central place for our historical association, whether it's a historical house, city hall or a church," said Waldt. …

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