Desloge, Missouri

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Desloge (pronounced /dəˈloʊʒ/, də·lōzh′) is a city in St. Francois County, Missouri, United States. The estimated 2008 population was 5,190.[1] It was 4,802 at the 2000 census.

Contents

History

The City of Desloge, Missouri was founded by Firmin V. Desloge, II son of Firmin Rene Desloge who migrated from France and settled in Potosi. Both Desloges were descendants of French nobility.[4] Firmin V. Desloge, II became acquainted with mining through his father and acquired many claims in the area of what is modern day Desloge and Bonne Terre. Desloge developed one of his claims just north of Bonne Terre and built a concentrating plant there.

The plant was destroyed by fire in 1883 and rather than rebuild, Firmin Desloge decided to explore his properties in the present area of Desloge. This new plant and the consolidation of several local mining companies under the Desloge family name became known as the Desloge Consolidated Lead Company. In 1887, the land was cleared and company houses for his staff were constructed in an area referred to as "Desloge Town", just west of the present day railroad tracks. Here, Desloge sank a shaft and built a concentrating plant which commenced operations in 1892. Desloge Missouri and the regional Southeast Missouri Lead Mining District became one of the principal lead mining centers in the US.[5] The Desloge Consolidated Lead Company plant ran under the family operation until 1929 when the company was sold to the St. Joe Lead Company.[6][7]

Firmin Desloge II, who died in 1930, willed to his family the original 47 acres (190,000 m2) of the hand-dug pits of the original lead mining operations and the deeply rutted wagon tracks on a property. The family then donated this land for a park, today named Firmin Desloge Park, and dedicated it to the mining families in the area.

Firmin Desloge moved to St. Louis in the early 1900s. His son, Firmin Desloge III was superintendent of mines until he moved his family including his sons Firmin V. Desloge IV, William Livingston Desloge and Theodore P. Desloge to St. Louis in 1921.

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