The dedication of the Knapstein Place signs today was amazing. About 50 people came, including about 35 members of the Frank Knapstein family.
It was a great way to put things back the way they should be. Big thanks go to the German-American Heritage Society of Saint Louis for its support and to Alderman Craig Schmid for introducing the bill in the Board of Aldermen giving Providence Place the honorary designation of Knapstein Place. We also have to thank Craig for his trumpet playing afterwards at the reception at Urban Eats Cafe nearby.
By way of review, the signs honor Frank Knapstein, a German immigrant and contractor who built throughout South St. Louis. The one-block Knapstein Place was built around 1915 or 1916 and named for Frank Knapstein. It was changed to Providence Place during the anti-German hysteria of World War I.
The German-American Heritage Society of Saint Louis and I campaigned for the honorary designation. We’re campaigning for a designation at five other streets city streets whose German names were changed during World War I.People at the reception at Urban Eats Cafe (above) look at an old subdivision plan showing Knapstein Place and other old newspaper articles about streets name changes during World War I.