The Hill – St. Louis’ Italian Neighborhood
The Hill is St. Louis’ famous Italian neighborhood. Residents on the Hill are extremely proud of their roots and the history of their neighborhood. The Hill is also a top destination for anyone who wants authentic Italian food, gifts or groceries.
The Hill Neighborhood in St. Louis is the city’s traditional Italian American neighborhood. Although known primarily for the dozens of fantastic Italian restaurants within its boundaries, the Hill is also one of the city’s most tight-knit communities. Just as they did a century ago, families on the Hill greet each other warmly at church, local bakeries or while working in perfectly manicured front lawns. The Hill is still the Italian version of a Norman Rockwell neighborhood.
The Hill is located south of Manchester Avenue, between Hampton Avenue on the west and Kingshighway Avenue on the east. Its southern border runs along Columbia and Southwest Avenues.
Settlement of what’s now called “the Hill” began in the 1830′s, but the area boomed later that century with the discovery of rich clay mines. The mines and other jobs attracted large numbers of Italian immigrants, and by the end of the nineteenth century, the area was a virtual “Little Italy.”
The small neighborhood has played a large role in the history of sports in America. One city block of the neighborhood is famous for hosting the boyhood homes of Baseball Hall of Famers Yogi Berra and Joe Garagiola, as well as the home of Jack Buck as he began his broadcast career. The neighborhood also produced approximately half of the 1950 U.S. soccer team that upset top-ranked England in the World Cup.
According to the 2000 U.S. Census, the Hill has 2,692 residents. Ninety five percent of the residents are white and about three percent are African American. Approximately 75 percent of residents still claim to be of Italian descent.
The median household income is $33,493, and two thirds of the housing units are owner-occupied. About half of the households are family households.