Category Archives: News

Fall 2013 Campbell House Newsletter — Hot Off the Press!

NewsletterGraphicAlrighty, folks.  So this has been a long time com­ing, and our apolo­gies for not hav­ing some­thing up a lit­tle soon­er but there has been SO MUCH going on around Camp­bell House over the past cou­ple of weeks- not the least of which is the pub­li­ca­tion of the lat­est edi­tion of our newslet­ter, the Camp­bell House Courier!

Next week we’ll have up anoth­er post­ing in our “Peel­ing Back the Lay­ers” series on the CHM restora­tion, but for now we want­ed to get you as jazzed as we are to read about every­thing that’s been going on here at the house over the past year.

Check out the link below to read about our Glo­ri­ous Gowns exhib­it, the new­ly installed restored par­lor draperies, get some updates from Direc­tor Andy (AKA: The Boss), some major events we’ve held like ‘Feast­ing with the Camp­bells’, and a real­ly inter­est­ing nugget of research that we found on Robert Camp­bell and Texas. (hint: if Robert Camp­bell hadn’t been around, the city of El Paso as we know it would not exist today.)

Have we piqued your interest?  Good!

Now click here to check it out.


Drink Up & Tweetup with Campbell House and Distilled History!

distilled historyMark your cal­en­dar!  All of us here at CHM are very excit­ed to part­ner with Dis­tilled His­to­ry, win­ner of the River­front Times 2013 St. Louis Web Award for Best Per­son­al Blog, and host a Tweet­up on Fri­day, Sep­tem­ber 27th cel­e­brat­ing St. Louis his­to­ry and Smith­son­ian Muse­um Day!  We’ll be about a block away from where Taste of St. Louis is going down, so keep in mind that you can stop on by and then head on over to Sol­diers Memo­r­i­al to enjoy all that Taste has to offer.

What, you might be ask­ing, makes this Tweet­up extra fun and inter­est­ing?  Well, not only do you get to expe­ri­ence the Camp­bell House Muse­um (for free), not only do you get to hang out with some awe­some mem­bers of the St. Louis twit­ter­verse (for free), not only do you get the chance to sign up for tick­ets to Camp­bell House and oth­er muse­ums for Smith­son­ian Muse­um Day (for free), not only do you get to have some great food pro­vid­ed by the deli­cious Maya Cafe (for… well, you get the point. This whole shindig is free.), but you get to have a drink while you do it!

We’re going to be tak­ing a look at St. Louis and Camp­bell his­to­ry from the unique (and quite enjoy­able) per­spec­tive of beer, wine, and spir­its.  We’ll have a great selec­tion of Schlafly beer, wine, Vir­ginia Camp­bel­l’s famous Roman Punch, and a spe­cial­ly pre­pared batch of home­made bath­tub gin for your tast­ing delight.  Let me reit­er­ate that last point: there will be bath­tub gin. Our friend Cameron (who hap­pens to be Dis­tilled His­to­ry’s award-win­ning author) will be brew­ing it up, and he assures us it’s per­fect­ly safe… just a lit­tle, erm, strong.  Click here to read more about his bath­tub gin experimentation.


Recipe for Roman Punch from Vir­ginia Camp­bel­l’s 1860 cook­book… don’t wor­ry, ours will be sans eggs.

photo (3)

Pres­i­dent Grant’s cup, with “U.S.G.” inscribed on its side

In addi­tion to the out of the ordi­nary nature of the Tweet­up, we’ll be hav­ing a pret­ty unique, one of a kind raf­fle.  For a buck or two, you (yes you!) get a free drink!  But, since all the drinks will tech­ni­cal­ly be free, we decid­ed to make it pret­ty spe­cial.  The win­ner of this raf­fle gets to take a swig out of a cup once belong­ing to Pres­i­dent U.S. Grant, who was quite the drinker him­self.  It’s in the col­lec­tion here at Camp­bell House and we’re pulling it out of the vault so that a lucky attendee can have the chance to join in some his­tor­i­cal com­mu­nion with our late great, high tol­er­anced for­mer president.

So, let’s recap:

1.) Great food and drink

2.) A unique look at St. Louis and Camp­bell history

3.) The chance to take a swig from a cup belong­ing to Pres­i­dent U.S. Grant

4.) Oppor­tu­ni­ty to hang out with mem­bers of the STL Twitterverse

5.) Sign up for free tick­ets to CHM and oth­er great muse­ums for Smith­son­ian Muse­um Day

6.) It’s free. (though we cer­tain­ly won’t sneeze at donations)

The only thing miss­ing?  You.

So swing by after work from 4–6 pm on Fri­day, Sep­tem­ber 27th.  Spend an hour, spend five min­utes, what­ev­er floats your boat.  Taste of St. Louis will be going on down­town, about a block away from us (and we’ll have park­ing… hint hint) We’d love to see you there!

TwitterShoot us a tweet for more info:

@campbellmuseum  or  @distlhistory


Campbell House First Opens 70 Years Ago!

Sev­en­ty years ago today the open­ing of the Camp­bell House Muse­um was report­ed with lav­ish full-col­or (it was 1943) pho­to sto­ry in the Post-Dis­patch. Here it is:

St. Louis Post-Dis­patch, Sun­day, Feb­ru­ary 28, 1943


A pic­ture of life as it was lived in St. Louis a cen­tu­ry ago is afford­ed vis­i­tors to the Camp­bell House, sit­u­at­ed at 1508 Locust street, which through the efforts of the Camp­bell House Foun­da­tion, has been restored to its orig­i­nal ele­gance and opened to the pub­lic. The house was built in 1851 by Robert Camp­bell, who made  a for­tune as a fur trad­er, and in it were enter­tained many vis­it­ing celebri­ties of the day, includ­ing Gen­er­al Grant.


After the death of the last of the three Camp­bell sons, none of whom  mar­ried, the house was inher­it­ed by Yale Uni­ver­si­ty. The Camp­bell House Foun­da­tion, a group of inter­est­ed cit­i­zens who want­ed to pre­serve the house as a land­mark, start­ed rais­ing funds for the pur­pose. Stix, Baer and Fuller Com­pa­ny pur­chased the house for the Foun­da­tion, and funds con­tributed were used to restore it. The orig­i­nal fur­nish­ings and authen­tic dec­o­ra­tions have served com­plete­ly to restore both the appear­ance and the char­ac­ter of the house.”


Today of course 70 years of research has revealed that Robert Camp­bell did not build the house (he and his fam­i­ly moved in three years lat­er) and the “orig­i­nal ele­gance” referred to in the arti­cle was real­ly just a 2oth cen­tu­ry con­cep­tion of a mid-19th cen­tu­ry inte­ri­or (just as an exam­ple, all that bright white wood­work would have nev­er worked in a coal soot filled house). Click the images to read the orig­i­nal cap­tions and enjoy a look back at the first rev­e­la­tion of a real St. Louis treasure.

Make 2013 your date to vis­it Camp­bell House, be it for the first or the tenth time, there is always some­thing new and inter­est­ing to learn from our superla­tive docents and stu­dents. Find our hours and more info here



Restored Glass Installed!

Reg­u­lar read­ers and fol­low­ers will recall that last sum­mer the Camp­bell House was van­dal­ized and a his­toric piece of etched glass in our entry doors was smashed. Read more about that here and here.

Thanks to our gen­er­ous sup­port­ers on Twit­ter and friends on Face­book, we raised almost enough funds to restore the bro­ken piece.  It proved to be a dif­fi­cult task to find an arti­san who was will­ing to take on this com­pli­cat­ed project. Thank­ful­ly we hired  local artist Lea Koester­er who care­ful­ly worked through the many chal­lenges this project pre­sent­ed.

A few days ago the restored glass was installed and the results are mag­nif­i­cent. Check out the pho­tos below.


Camp­bell House front doors: orig­i­nal etched glass on the right and space left by the bro­ken glass on the left.


The new piece of glass is care­ful­ly unwrapped after trav­el­ling from the artist’s studio.


Lea Koester­er does some last-minute touch-up.


Can you tell which one is the new piece of glass? It is the one on the left.


Lea Koester­er proud­ly stands by the fin­ished product.

Thank you Lea and all the donors who helped us com­plete this project. We still have a lit­tle more fundrais­ing to do the com­plete this project. Please con­sid­er mak­ing a dona­tion below.

Campbell Cuisine » Cook (and eat) Like a Campbell at Dierbergs

A place set­ting of Vir­gini­a’s chi­na, crys­tal and napkin.

It’s no secret the Camp­bells liked their food.

We have Vir­gini­a’s cook­book from the 1840s, Camp­bell let­ters are lit­tered with ref­er­ences to food (and drink), and we have records of  pay­ments to St. Louis’ finest restau­rants. On top of the doc­u­ments, this house has an impres­sive col­lec­tion of orig­i­nal cook­ing equip­ment and china.

This hol­i­day sea­son, if you want to get a taste of his­to­ry and the Camp­bell lifestyle, you have the chance to take a class at Dier­bergs School of Cook­ing fea­tur­ing a menu inspired by Vir­gini­a’s recipes. Here’s the offi­cial descrip­tion with links to reg­is­ter imme­di­ate­ly following:

Christ­mas Din­ner at Camp­bell House
List­ed on the Nation­al Reg­is­ter of His­toric Places and a des­ig­nat­ed City of St. Louis Land­mark, the Camp­bell House Muse­um is “Down­ton Abbey” St. Louis style! Our favorite food his­to­ri­an recre­ates a sump­tu­ous menu based on the 19th cen­tu­ry recipes from the Camp­bell House Muse­um’s culi­nary col­lec­tions. It’s per­fect for a hol­i­day cel­e­bra­tion! All class­es will be taught by Suzanne Cor­bett, Cer­ti­fied Culi­nary Professional.

Roman Punch (Slushy Cham­pagne Punch) • Cream of Onion Soup • Beef Ten­der­loin Medal­lions with Mush­room Sauce Chausseur • Queen of She­ba Cake (French Choco­late Almond Cake) with Cream Chan­til­ly  

Christ­mas Din­ner at Camp­bell House will be offered on two dates, each at a dif­fer­ent Dier­bergs location:

Southroads (SR): Novem­ber 14th, Wednes­day, 6:30 to 8:30 PM. Reg­is­ter here.
Clark­son (CL): Decem­ber 17th, Mon­day, 6:30 to 8:30 PM. Reg­is­ter here.

Camp­bell House staff will stop by all the class­es to say hel­lo, and maybe even join the class with you! We hope to see you there.