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"Comfort and Satisfaction to All": Excavation of a Nineteenth-Century Coffee House

Author(s): Michael J. Meyer

Year: 2017

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In 2015, the Missouri Department of Transportation investigated a mid-nineteenth century property formerly known as the Racine House. From 1850 until 1872, the house operated as a coffee shop, saloon, boarding house, hotel, and general gathering place for working class men. Catering almost exclusively to French-Canadian immigrants, the Racine House was one of many such "social clubs" in this heavily-Germanic neighborhood. Recent archeological excavations uncovered a pair of features located adjacent and within the rear portion of the coffee house. Although the features appear to have been originally constructed as separate chambers of a small ice house, they were heavily modified over the years and converted into privies, water closets, and household trash dumps. Material recovered from the lowest zones of the features inform on the diet, health, and general living conditions of this segment of nineteenth-century St. Louis society.

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"Comfort and Satisfaction to All": Excavation of a Nineteenth-Century Coffee House. Michael J. Meyer. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Fort Worth, TX. 2017 ( tDAR id: 435479)


Temporal Keywords
19th Century

Spatial Coverage

min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 526

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America