The Third and Final Fire Thorns St Louis Church Down

In the case of the destruction of St. Augustine Church in St. Louis, the fire was the instrument, but the long years of disinterest towards a historic building of obvious value were the cause of the final destruction

Another landmark in the panorama of a city eliminated forever by fire and inattention to historical memory.

St. Augustine’s Roman Catholic Church – St. Louis in 2107 (licensed under the terms of the cc-by-2.0 – by Paul Sableman

St. Louis firefighters battled a fire at the former St. Augustine Catholic Church in St. Louis on Monday, March 18, 2024. The historic building, completed in 1896 in the  Gothic Revival brick style, was home to a large congregation of Catholics, it has suffered a long, slow decline due to abandonment, thieves, squatters and two precedent fires.

Firefighters had to fight the fire for more than three hours. The fire was too destructive to leave evident clues on its origins, but the fact that the building had no electrical systems or gas mains leaves open the possibility of arson or an accidental man-made event, also because low temperatures had been recorded on the night of the fire. This fact leads to suspect that someone entered there, perhaps seeking refuge.

In 2020 the estimated cost of repairs was estimated at $10 million, which, considering the building’s decline and abandonment, were apparently never found.