St. Louis, MO 63131
A 60 acre tract of land in St. Louis County was surveyed, subdivided, and registered as the subdivision of "Crystal Spring Lake Park" in December 1922. The original owners were John G. (1879 to 1942) and Jessie B. P. (1886 to 1967) Oehler (pronounced "Ayler"). Oehler Drive was the main street off Bopp Road until it was renamed Country Club Drive in the mid-1950s.
A classified ad under Resorts was published in the November 19, 1922 edition of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch: "CRYSTAL SPRINGS LAKE PARK--Restricted, club-site lots for sale: wooded grove, 15 acres lake, well stocked, good fishing and bathing; only 13 1/2 miles from city courthouse: 1/2 to 3/4 hour drive; good roads, no hills; come out today; lots 50 x 100 ft. $295 and up; $100 down, balance to suit; entrance on Clayton rd. and Bopp rd. between Geyer and Ballas rd. Follow signs along Clayton rd. FRED J. WESSEL, Agent, 4172 Delmar bd."
The official designation is: The south sixty acres of the west 1/2 of the southwest 1/4 of Section 23 in Township 45 north, Range 5 east of the prime meridian. The City's name comes from Crystal Spring Lake, a 16-acre artificial lake that was here from the 1920s until the late 1940s. It was between Lakeview Drive and Grandview Drive. There are differing theories about why it was drained--natural (e.g., lightning striking the dam) or man-made (someone blowing up the dam). Research on this continues. Please contact the Communications Coordinator if you can contribute to solving the mystery of the lake.
The Crystal Lake Country Club golf course was here from 1929 to 1979. It was designed by famous golf course designer William Diddel (1884 to 1985). The club house, swimming pool, and the 17th & 18th greens were on the east side of Bopp Road where The Willows condos and Hunter Park are today. The Pro Shop and rest of the course were on the west side of Bopp where the homes in Barrington Place are today. The home at 2331 Todforth Way was built on the site of the 14th & 15th tees.
The course was originally owned by the Oehlers. In 1932, they sold it to Clayton Publisher Fred Essen (1863 to 1946). His son, Victor H. Essen (1897 to 1981) managed it until it was sold to developers in 1978. Many local organizations such as the Engineers' Club of St. Louis and the Traffic Club held regular tournaments there and many schools held class parties and dances at the club house. From 1929 to 1931, events at Crystal Lake Country Club were described in the Whip & Spur magazine. The article from December 1929 was included in our June 2014 Newsletter which is posted in the Newsletters section.
In December, 1932, a fire destroyed the restaurant and locker room. It was reported on the front page of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch on December 9, 1932.
2013 marked the 75th anniversary of Crystal Lake Park.
It was incorporated as a Village in 1938 and as a Class 4 City in 1957. Vincil Francis Hunter, Sr. (1899 to 1994) was the first Mayor and served 4 terms from 1958 to 1966. Prior to 1958, the Village was governed by a Board of Trustees. His son, Vincil Francis Hunter, Jr. served on the Board of Alderpersons. Hunter Park located on the west side of Putter Lane is named in honor of and thanks for the contributions the Hunter families have made.
Boland Bridge on Country Club Drive is named for Donald Boland (1918 to 2013), a long-time resident who served as Street Commissioner for many years and oversaw the replacement of the old wooden bridge. Mattox Court was named for Robert E. Mattox (1892 to 1969) who served as Mayor from 1966 to 1969. The area north of Country Club Drive is in the Fairway Manor Subdivision and the street names are golf terms: Putter, Cleek, and Divot.
In April, 1940, the U.S. Census recorded 34
households in CLP with a total population of 95. This information was recorded in Enumeration District 95-53. It can be searched through the National Archives. Free ancestry searches can be made on the Family Search web site https://familysearch.org/search In addition, the St. Louis County Library subscribes to the Ancestry dot com database which can be searched from computers in the library. The library also subscribes to other databases such as Fold 3 and Heritage Quest which can be searched from your home computer.
The population has grown quite a bit from the 95 1940. Subsequent U.S. Census counts: 1950: 167; 1960: 307; 1970: 356; 1980: 496; 1990: 506; 2010: 470.
CLP's new logo with the tree and bench was designed by graphic artist Georgia Schmidt and adopted in June 2010. Prior to that, the logo was a golf ball.