Are you curious about what businesses used to be in buildings throughout the neighborhood? Cara Jensen, Shaw resident and owner of Sherlock Homes, has started compiling this information in a Google map. To date she has added businesses that were present in 1956, their status in 2015, and is now starting to add in information from a directory printed in 1915.

The map covers the area currently considered the Shaw Neighborhood, as well as buildings north of I-44 to Park Ave, which was often considered Shaw before the highway was built. Places on the map are color coded to indicate their status in 2015: green = current business, yellow = building standing, but vacant, red = building demolished, and brown = private residence.

In 1950 the population in the City of St. Louis was 856,796. According to a post by Jensen on her website, in 1956 Shaw had 7 taverns, 23 markets/delicatessens, 7 service stations, 18 barbers/beauty shops, 13 laundrettes, 7 restaurants, 4 bakeries, 4 shoe repair, 5 dentists, and 2 movie theaters. Can you imagine having that many businesses now?

Some of the businesses from Shaw’s past include:

Flotkin's 39th St Super Market

Painting of Flotkin’s 39th Street Super Market. Source: Remember Flotken’s Website

Vacant or Demolished

  • 39th Street Lunch | 1716 S. 39th (demolished)
  • Flotkin’s 39th Street Super Market | 1801 S. 39th (demolished)
  • Liederkranz Club | 2163 S. Grand (demolished)
  • Link Drugs | 4068 Shenandoah (demolished, now Dorothy Park)
  • Permenter Tavern | 3901 Castleman (demolished)
  • Shaw Theater | 3901 Shaw (vacant, ready for new business)
  • Wheeler and Robinson Cleaners | 4001 Shenandoah (demolished)
  • Woolworth’s Department Store | 1717-25 S. 39th (demolished)
Ice's Plain and Fancy

Current Shaw business, Ice’s Plain and Fancy. Source: Ice’s Plain and Fancy website

Current Shaw Business or Private Residence

Jensen often posts about Shaw-related history. Check out her website

We would love to hear any memories you have of these businesses, see photos, or receive suggestions for the map. Send them our way via the Comments section or email us at


  1. katie January 27, 2016 at 12:46 pm - Reply

    My grandpa was on a committee to prevent 44 from being built; it’s a shame it didn’t work. This is a great and interesting project.

    • Stephanie Herbers January 27, 2016 at 2:29 pm - Reply

      Katie, I think I might have a few articles about the committee. I’ll have to dig them up and do a post about it. Thanks for commenting!

  2. Mary Brake January 29, 2016 at 1:19 pm - Reply

    One must remember that a lot of people had 1 car or none. One walked to the stores.

  3. Brenda Malone July 13, 2017 at 9:40 pm - Reply

    Do you have information on Howard’s Beauty Salon on 39th Street (I think)? My Grandma used to get her hair cut there. Can you verify it was on 39th.

  4. Grace Mitchell January 2, 2024 at 2:57 pm - Reply

    Flotkins was replaced with a doctors office. Dr. Hall was a physician. And then the theatre replaced the doctors office.
    39th & Folsom was a drug store.
    39th & Mcree was a velvet freeze
    Mascara’s Restaurant and Ragsdale Beauty Salon was on 39th St also.

  5. Bonnie Radford January 14, 2024 at 3:02 pm - Reply

    What is the history of the Radine’s Department Store located on S 39th Street off Shaw Blvd in St Louis, MO?
    Also the Lester Music Store on S 39th street & Castleman in St Louis, Mo?

    Thank you, I grew up at 3945 Castleman and went to Sherman Elementary School & Roosevelt High School!
    Bonnie Radford

  6. Tom Guelker February 19, 2024 at 5:48 pm - Reply

    My sister used to work at Ehnes bakery on 39th street. We lived on Flora. All three children went to St. Margaret of Scotland. I remember when the new school was built. Walked up the alley to go to the Shenandoah theater. There was a used car dealer near where Flad intersects with Grand. It was called Clink’s. My father called it Clink’s Clunkers. Used to go to Blue Ridge Bottling on special occasions. A regular Friday night out with my family was at Sala’s. I have one of their menus laminated.
    I discovered this site while researching why 39th street is called 39th street. The street before is Spring, and the street after is Thurman. Any ideas?

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