Reflections on Brentwood's Changing Landscape
Today's businesses fill buildings left vacant by some of Brentwood's former landmark businesses.
It's always interesting to look back at how certain places in Brentwood were perceived at different times. In looking at some of the landmarks in and near Brentwood, sometimes they stay the same and sometimes they don't. Take a moment to read some of the recollections of elder Brentwood residents who came before us and how they saw some familiar places we know today:
- Carl's: Did you know Carl's was once called a different name? In the September 1994 edition of The Pulse, Rosemarie Kornfeld wrote, "I remember when there was a small building on the southeast corner of Manchester and Brentwood Boulevard which was a Footlong Hot Dog Stand (later moved to Manchester and High School Drive and now called Carl's. It was also called the Chili House at one time)." Take it from me, they still have great chili!
- Hunan Wok: Kornfeld also told The Pulse that Hunan Wok was once a variety store and a "Tom Boy Store." I've always loved the food at Hunan, and it's interesting to know the building had other lives too.
- River Des Peres: In the same issue of The Pulse—reprinted from an interview in The Scope from August 1961—Anna Smith wrote, "River Des Peres was a wide, clean stream filled to high banks with clear water fed by several springs. At that time, it was a good fishing stream. You could catch all kinds of fish—big ones, too." This is not the same River Des Peres we all know and love, but it's good to know someone caught fish in the place where the River Des Peres Yacht Club is located.
- The Brickyard: When Constance Ann McNeil sat down with The Pulse in September 1994, she recalled, "When I was a young child my father worked at a place called General Refractories, known to us as 'The Brickyard.' It was located where Hanley Industrial Court is presently standing. Many times we'd go to pick up my father and watch The Kilns (brick furnaces) burning and the bricks were red hot. 'The Brickyard' caught on fire sometime between 1965 and 1968. It was never rebuilt and the industrial court sprang up."
I think my favorite quote is one from Regina Gahr in her interview with Jerry Stimson in the same issue of The Pulse. When reminiscing about Brentwood, she said, "What I remember best about growing up in Brentwood is the people I grew up with and the freedom we had when growing up. "
Regina, I couldn't have said it better myself!