A few more updates on this St. Louis’ history that could be pertinent to creating a mortal concept.
East St. Louis continued to grow through the 50’s and into the early 60’s at an explosive rate. The urbanized area of East St. Louis stretches from 270 at Granite city to 255 around the Cahokia Mounds historical site and reaching towards the outskirts of Columbia and Belleville.
Both sides of the river were wracked by horrible race riots in the 60’s, but the worst of the rioting was in East St. Louis. This resulted in hundreds of deaths and tens of millions of dollars in property damage. In St. Louis, this brought about the razing of destroyed properties to be quickly replaced by new construction.
In East St. Louis, this brought some neighborhoods to Detroit-level urban decay with residents living in absolute squalor. The money in East St. Louis fled to O’Fallon, Belleville and Columbia as conditions declined. The riots prompted accelerated white flight from the city, and St Charles has seen exponential growth, forming one solid stretch of humanity from the Mississippi river to the Westernmost edge of Wentzville.
East St. Louis politicians and law enforcement are shamelessly corrupt, and blatant to the point of provocative. St. Louis’ politicians toe the line, playing by the rules just enough to not incite citizens or catch a Federal case. St. Charles is run more discretely, but those in the know are well aware of the private transactions that guide the decisions made in the legislative chambers.
In all three cities the banks, investment firms and casinos have exceptional influence and often vie for financial dominance. The organized criminals look and operate differently in each area, always pushing the limits of what the public will tolerate.
East St. Louis’ streets are run by gangs primarily trafficking in prostitution and crack. St. Louis is a patchwork of competing organizations, mostly based on ethnic loyalties plying the trades and poisons of their home country. Prominent among those organizations are the Russian, Bosnian, Vietnamese and Italian syndicates. St. Charles’ competing criminal factions are motorcycle clubs, meth dealers and a Mexican enclave that’s rumored to have distant ties to the cartels.