After much delay, occasioned by various circumstances beyond his control, (a recital of which here
would not Interest his patront,) the publisher is at length enabled to lay before the public the first
volume of the St. Louis City Directory, a book much needed, and which he wishes to make annual.
In presenting this work, he is aware that it lacks much of being full and complete, and is painfully
conscious that it has gone to press with many errors, despite his labor and vigilance. This was to be
expected, as a matter of course, in the publication of the initial volume of a book of this kind, the getting
up of various parts of which had, from its nature, to be entrusted to many hands. It would require, for
instance, an extraordinary stretch of credulity, to suppose that the twenty persons employed to canvass the
city for the names, occupations and locations of its citizens, and the half a dozen others, engaged in copy-
ing, were all capable of performing their duties; or, admitting that they were so qualified, to take it for
granted that they all discharged their duties with fidelity. That most of the canvassers were gentlemen of
intelligence, and well “posted” in matters pertaining to thetr duty, he is pleased to admit; yet some of
these, even, may have failed to comply implicitly with the instructions given them; whilst A few, either
from incompetence or inexcusable neglect, have almost wholly disregarded the forms and instructions fur-
nished them. This circumstance, whilst it has greatly delayed the work, has caused the publisher much
trouble, contributed greatly to his expenses, and is the immediate cause of nine-tenths of the omissions
and errors that may exist in the body of the work. Below is a lit of the parties engaged in canvassing,
except some of the assistants, whoso names are not remembered:
First Ward—Morris Kuster, Frederick Bornefeld; 2d-Mr. Letcher, with assistants; 3d—Edward Pot-
ter, with assistant; 4th—J. H. Carlisle, J. Young; 5th-Presley Talbott, with assistant; 6th—Mr. Tuttle,
Mr. Branch; 7th-R. J.Watson; 8th—John A. Pratt, with assistant; 8th—Mr. Strong, Mr. Broakway;
10th—Mr. Cormany, Mr. Bohlinger, Mr. Garechten; Main street, Levee and Commercial street—William
H. Fraser. The re-canvassing, (embracing the territory between Convent street on the south, Cherry on
the north, Fourth street on the west, and the Levee, on the east.) was mainly conducted by the Messrs.
The canvassing for the next volume will be conducted on an entirely different plan—a plan which, whilst
it will insure accuracy, will materially lessen the time expended and the expenses which have been incurred
in making the canvass for this. By this principle, all existing errors will be corrected, and the thousand
of new names, which will then have to be inserted will find their proper places, without interfering with
the present general arrangement.
The publication of a Directory in this city has always been considered, not only a very great undertak-
ing, but has hitherto proved hazardous to the pecuniary interests of publishers. The present work wa
undertaken with a full consciousness that it would be attended with difficulties; yet the publisher had n
just appreciation of its magnitude, and embarked in the enterprise more with the view of supplying a
great public necessity than with the hope of making it a soune of pecuniary profit.
After calculating all the items of expense which occurred to him as likely to accrue in producing the
work, he fixed the price of the volume at $2.50,—figures which, he supposed, would secure him against
actual loss. Subsequent experience has proved that although this sum may cover expenses, including
interest on money, it will render him no equate compensation for his time and labor. The price of the
next volume will, therefore, be fixed at $3; and, in order to make it even partially “pay,” the like sum
must be charged for this, except in cases where subscribers claim the work at $2.50, because it was “so
nominated” in the prospectus.
The “Business Mirror,” or Key to the bedy of the work, will be found very full and correctt,
except in some of the mechanical occupations, in collecting which, from the negligence of canvassers, it
has been difficult properly to discriminate between principals and employees. This forms, as it were an
independent book, and will be found invaluable to many classes of business men.
The appendix, though not as full as the publisher designed to make it, is also an exceedingly useful
part of the work, and will be found especially valuable to strangers. It was his intention to add about
forty pages of statistical and other interesting matter to this department. Most of this matter was pre-
pared, but so urgent has been the demand for the early issue of the bock, that the publisher has yielded to
the importunities of the public, and has been compelled, from want of facilities to produce it rapidly, to let
the matter lay over for the next volume.
The Advertising Department will well repay examination. It contains the cards of many of
our first men in various branches of business. The mem fact that their cards appear in this work argues
well for their sagacity and liberality—a fact which the public can now have an opportunity of testing.
In concluding this notice, the undersigned cannot do justice to his own feelings without alluding to the
generosity of a few friends, who have aided him in his enterprise. He is especially indebted to the liberality
of Capt. James A. Grant, of this city, for much of the “sinews of war” employed in the “campaign.”
To him are the public greatly indebted for the privilege of having a good City Directory, lie furnished
much of the capital employed; and, what is still more to his credit, he was not, at the time of proffering
aid, a citizen of St. Louis. He is now, however, engaged in business here, (in company with Edward
Wyman,, Esq.,) and the publisher can do no less than call attention to this fact, hoping that business men
will remember it. The publisher is also under great obligations to many of his patrons, who kindly aided
him in the hour of perplexity, by advancing money on their advertisements, and cheering him on in his
arduous task. But for these generous d there are many such in St. Louis—he might have failed
in accomplishing his purpose, and had his business, reputation aiid pecuniary prospects damaged for years.
These friends have his warmest thanks.
The work has been corrected up to the latest possible moment, and is, therefore, far more vauable than
if it had been published one or two months ago. Since our canvass was made, more than fifteen hundred
changes, corrections, and additions have been made—a fact which speaks loudly in favor of the necessity
of an annual Directory.
Its typographical appearance is not as gocd as it would have been, had we been able to pn cure a power,
press on which to print the Work. The binding is excellent, and is the work of our young and enterprising
friend, C. B. McIntire. The style (marbled edges) is produced only at this house, and adds much to the
toute ensemble of the book.
But, the work is before the public, with its gocd points and its defeats; and, take it all in all, it is, per-
haps, under the circumstances, creditable. Its value, to the business public, is beyond computation, and,
should this effort to supply the wants of the community meet with general favor, the public may expect
a new volume about the first of September 1858.
R. V.Kennedy, , Publisher .
☞ See the next page.