St. Louis-area state representatives Rasheen Aldridge and Trish Gunby are asking the St. Louis Cardinals to erect a monument at the site of old slave pens that we located near Busch Stadium. The land in downtown St. Louis kept enslaved people before being auctioned off or sold. The state reps believe a new monument could begin healing the divisions caused by race and injustice.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch released part of the representative’s statement which read, “The Cardinals are beloved in our region and as an organization support many local causes that endear them to us, their fans. It is in this spirit that we ask you and the St. Louis Cardinals organization to erect a marker that recognizes the horror and history of where Busch Stadium now stands.”
According to a story written on stlouis-mo.gov, Lynch’s Slave Pens, named after St. Louis slave trafficker Bernard Lynch, were located in various locations around the city and slaves would be sold or auctioned at the court house steps downtown. One of the pen locations was at the corner of Clark and Broadway. According to stlmag.com, Lynch’s Slave Pens were located at 104 Locust (today located between 4th and Broadway, where the Federal Reserve stands). The last location was at Clark and Broadway, near Busch Stadium.
The two separate sources do not reference the current land where Busch Stadium or Ballpark Village reside as being the site of slave pens.
The Cardinals have not publicly responded at this time.