Initially a farming community, Creve Coeur has developed into a thriving community in central St. Louis County with beautiful homes, acres of parkland, hundreds of businesses, and a number of high-tech office parks.
It began with a road: Olive Street Road, now called Olive Boulevard. The road followed a centuries-old Indian trail that took the high ground from the Mississippi River to the Missouri River. Carts, wagons, carriages, and stagecoaches took passengers and freight both west to new lands and east to the city of St. Louis.
Creve Coeur was one of many unincorporated communities that grew along the road. Its name, which means broken heart in French, comes from nearby Creve Coeur Lake. Legend has it that an Indian princess fell in love with a French fur trapper, but the love was not returned. According to the story, she then jumped from a ledge overlooking Creve Coeur Lake; the lake then formed itself into a broken heart.
Throughout the years of rapid development, Creve Coeur has continued its commitment to preserving history. Nearly two hundred years old, both the Hackmann and Clester cabins sit in Conway Park. These cabins, which face Highway 270, are a tribute to the past and have witnessed the evolution of Creve Coeur. The city also maintains Lake School House, a one-room schoolhouse, and the Tappmeyer farmhouse, both built in the late 1800s.
By 1950, St. Louis had reached its peak population with 856,000. St. Louis City was filling up, forcing returning soldiers to look for housing in St. Louis County to raise their families. Families wanted bigger houses, more yard space, and places to park their new cars. The technological advancements in the automobile industry, along with the construction of Highways 270 and 40, further pushed the westward movement away from the central city.
When Creve Coeur was incorporated in December 1949, less than one square mile housed a population of 1,900 citizens. The city's charter was adopted in 1976. Today, the population of Creve Coeur is 18,702 spanning 10.27 square miles with approximately 7,800 housing units. Currently, Creve Coeur has 80 miles of public streets and 16 miles of private streets. Home to two private colleges, four private high schools, five private primary schools, two public school districts, and approximately fifteen houses of worship, Creve Coeur is a place where everything a resident needs is no more than ten minutes away.
Did you know… The Creve Coeur Dog Park is a 2.5-acre fenced area in the northeast area of Conway Park at 12301 Conway Road where dogs are allowed to play off-leash. The dog park is divided into two sections: a two-acre large dog area and a one-half-acre small dog area that is reserved for dogs smaller than 30 pounds. The Creve Coeur Dog Park is open to registered members only.
Creve Coeur dips into both the Ladue School District as well as the Parkway North School District in the western portion of the city.
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