Ruins and Fountain Pond - Tower Grove Park - St. Louis, MO
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member YoSam.
N 38° 36.403 W 090° 15.409
15S E 738867 N 4276703
Huge park, and in the center a fountain with faux ruins
Waymark Code: WMP8TA
Location: Missouri, United States
Date Posted: 07/21/2015
Published By:Groundspeak Premium Member Geo Ferret
Views: 5

County of marker: St. Louis Independent City
Location of marker: Main Dr., E. of circle, in front of fountain, Tower Grove Park
Markers erected: 1975, 1970 & 2010

Marker text:

Restored and Illuminated July 1975
In Memory of
Board Member 1949 ~ 1950

Marker text:
In recognition and appreciation of the late
ELSIE M. STRUEBEL, whose generosity and love for
Tower Grove Park
made possible the restoration
of this fountain pond.   1873 Restored 1970

Marker text:
Ruins and Fountain Pond
These faux ruins and fountain pond were created by
Tower Grove Park's founder, Henry Shaw, in 1872 & 1873.
In 2010, they were fully restored thanks to a generous gift from
With matching gifts from many Park supporters
July 2010

"The fountain pond is situated west of the music stand, on the upland north of Main Drive. It is oblong in shape; on three sides, east, west and south, is bounded by grassy banks; on the north side, there is a rockery, and an artistic arrangement of stone blocks selected from the remains of the old Lindell Hotel. These large stones are laid together to resemble a ruined facade, including some broken columns, the whole having an irregular but graceful outline. There is a three-tiered fountain in the centre of the pond. The pond was designed to accommodate model sailboats, but has become popular primarily for the picturesque "ruins" that line its northern edge. In 1867, shortly before Henry Shaw deeded the land that would become Tower Grove Park to the City of St. Louis, the Lindell Hotel burned to the ground. Although the hotel had been completed only four years earlier, Henry Shaw saw potential "ancient ruins" in the building's fire damaged blocks.

"As he had done with the columns removed from the Old Courthouse during a remodeling, Henry Shaw had a great pile of limestone blocks from the hotel transported to Tower Grove Park. The courthouse columns had become part of the Magnolia Entrance to the Park; the Lindell Hotel's limestone would be restacked following a plan drawn up by Henry Shaw and horticulturist James Gurney and transformed into the "ancient" and picturesque "ruins" that had become popular park adornments with the rise of the European "grand tour" and the poets' romantic meditations on the triumph of nature over the creations of humankind: Byron's "Isles of Greece" (Don Juan), Keats' "On Seeing the Elgin Marbles", or Shelley's "Ozymandias."

"The recycling of stonework from downtown buildings continued even after Shaw's death in 1889. The stone balustrade along the pond's south shore was added in 1899 -- until that date it had edged the roof of another Barnett-designed structure, the U.S. Custom House and Post Office built at Third and Olive in 1852. Although Barnett's Custom House and Post Office building was not demolished until 1939, its postal functions had been taken over in 1884 by a new building five blocks to its west -- today's "Old Post Office." When the pond was enlarged in 1916, the balustrade was again rebuilt, this time on a new more stable concrete base.

"The Sailboat Pond, more frequently now called the Fountain Pond, and the artificial ruins behind it, are on the north side of the Main Drive between The Piper Palm House and the Music Stand. The pond is an elongated oval with a rectangular extension toward the drive. It centers on a cast iron fountain of three tiers erected on a small island. The south side of the pond is outlined by a stone balustrade that was moved here in 1899 from the roof of the Custom House, a building then located at Third and Olive downtown and designed by George I. Barnett in 1852 under the supervision of Ammi Burnham Young." ~ Tower Grove Park

Web link: [Web Link]

History of Mark:
Please see above

Additional point: Not Listed

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kJfishman visited Ruins and Fountain Pond - Tower Grove Park - St. Louis, MO 06/03/2017 kJfishman visited it