Campbell House Museum to Begin Million Dollar Addition

The historic Campbell House Museum at 1508 Locust Street downtown applied for a $1,000,000 building permit last week. Two separate additions at the back of the property will add a new street-level accessible entrance and lobby, an elevator and stair tower, added classroom space and a new and larger Museum Store.

Rear alley rendering shows new stair and elevator tower at left and added entrance and Museum Store in middle, between the existing house and carriage house.

Built in 1851, the Campbell House was the first house on the first private street in St. Louis. Lucas Place–today’s Locust—stretched between 13th and 16th Street and included paved stone sidewalks and private security. The street’s last house was built in 1871. The Campbell house is the last surviving property from Lucas Place.

Lucas Place circa 1885, colorized, courtesy Campbell House Museum website

An Ulster Scot, Robert Campbell emigrated from Northern Ireland aged 18 and made his wealth in the fur trade before branching out into dry goods, real estate, insurance, gold mines and the hotel industry. One of the richest men in the United States, he purchased the house on Lucas in 1854, and it remained in the family until 1938.

The home became a museum in 1943. The museum holds the family’s collection of original furniture, fixtures, paintings and other objects and papers. An extensive five year renovation was completed in 2005. The house has been a City of St. Louis Landmark since 1971 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. TripAdvisor lists the Campbell House Museum as the sixth highest rated thing to do in St. Louis and as the region’s highest rated museum.

Metropolitan Build Company is listed as the contractor.

New accessible entrance as seen from the garden