The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reviews "Auguste Chouteau's Journal," edited by recently retired UMSL librarian Gregory Ames and published by the Mercantile Library at UMSL, and "Founding St. Louis" by J. Frederick Fausz, associate professor of history at UMSL.

St. Louis’ French origins are explored in two new books with University of Missouri–St. Louis connections. They were reviewed together in an article in the Sunday edition of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

“Founding St. Louis: First City of the New West” was written by J. Frederick Fausz, associate professor of history at UMSL. “August Chouteau’s Journal: Memory, Mythmaking & History in the Heritage of New France” was published by the St. Louis Mercantile Library at UMSL and edited by Gregory Ames, who recently retired as curator of the Mercantile’s John W. Barriger III National Railroad Library.

“Founding St. Louis” tells the story of St. Louis’ beginnings, focusing heavily on the roles played by Pierre Laclede, Auguste Chouteau and the Osage and other Native American tribes.

“Fausz’s prose, clear and filled with detail, provides a smooth narrative of an age long ago for a region that has lost most of its sense of French origins,” the St. Louis Post-Dispatch said.

“Auguste Chouteau’s Journal” features a new translation of Chouteau’s journal, which the library originally translated 153 years ago. The new translation helps to clarify the mystery behind St. Louis’ founding date.

“Ames’ new translation cites Chouteau’s handwriting in showing that St. Louis was founded on Feb. 15, not Feb. 14 (that latter date was used for the grand 200th birthday bash in 1964),” the St. Louis Post-Dispatch said.

Visit to read the St. Louis Post-Dispatch review of the books.

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Ryan Heinz

Ryan Heinz