Recording 50 Years (50th Feature)

Zoe ConnerUncategorized

It started, as some things do, in a storage room. In the quiet, emptiness of winter break, they were unearthed from the mustiest, darkest basement storage room: enormous bins chock full of Crossroads’ internal and external media and communications archives. Piles and piles of literary magazines, theatre programs, yellowing newspapers, and original, genuine typewritter-typed, school bulletins and home communications.

Today, our bulletins, newspapers, and communications have grown with the technological times into digital publications, emails, and posts, but when Crossroads was co-founded by Arthur and Carol Lieber in 1974, communications were typed on a typewriter, and eventually printed on a printing press in the basement of 500 DeBaliviere. Finding such delight in pouring through these archives, Zoe Conner, Marketing and Communications Coordinator, resolved to organize, record, and share the history of Crossroads laid before them.

Soon after the start of this 50th year, Zoe met Arthur Lieber for the first time on his visit to discuss partnerships between Crossroads and Civitas, his second founded organization dedicated to nurturing the critical thinking skills and global awareness of young people. Though pressed for time, Arthur couldn’t help but follow Zoe’s enthusiasm upstairs to the records room. The two found a shared joy and passion for recording the history of Crossroads, a thorough and collective account of 50 years, from 1974 to 2024. Read Arthur’s initial reflections below, and stay tuned as we continue to document and publish our history.

“Many people do not know that we began as just a middle school. Our first home was in a since-demolished neighborhood called LaClede Town, located a few blocks east of St. Louis University. The school grew and moved to an old home on Lindell in the Central West End. Four years later, students, parents, and staff all wanted to expand to a high school, and we did. But we needed more space, and fortunately, we were able to move to the present location on DeBaliviere. Despite the challenges of running a school, Crossroads has a very rich history, and we have always found strength in each other. We hope in this the 50th year of one of St. Louis’ most unique institutions, to share much more of the school’s history with you.” – Arthur Lieber, Co-Founder of Crossroads