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Missouri, U.S.A.
Welcome to St. Louis, Missouri.
The city of St. Louis is situated along the western bank of the Mississippi River, which forms the state border with Illinois, and is home to approximately 318,416 people. St. Louis was founded in 1764 by Pierre Laclede and Auguste Chouteau and named after Louis IX of France. The area around the river was originally settled by the French, but after the Seven Years' War, Spain overtook the region. The east territory was ceded to the victor, Britain, and the area where St. Louis stands today belonged to Spanish Louisiana from 1762 to 1803. The United States acquired the territory in the Louisiana Purchase, and the City of St. Louis developed into a major port on the Mississippi river. In the 19th century, St. Louis was the fourth-largest city in the country, and reached its peak at 856,796 inhabitants. However, the suburbanization that occurred between the 1950s and 1990s drastically reduced the city's population, and it further declined with restructuring of industry loss of jobs. The 21st century has brought on new, positive changes, and in 2006, St. Louis received the World Leadership Award for urban renewal. The city celebrated 250 years in 2014, and today the city is defined by its burgeoning music and performing arts scene. The most prominent music styles in St. Louis are blues, jazz and ragtime. The city is also home to the nationally and internationally renowned St. Louis Symphony, which is the second-oldest symphony orchestra in the United States. One of the more famous edifices in St. Louis is the Gateway Arch, a 630-foot monument clad in stainless steel in the form of an inverted, weighted catenary arch. The monument is the world's tallest arch, and was constructed in honor of the westward expansion of the United States. The Gateway Arch is the centerpiece of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial and has become world-famous as St. Louis' city symbol. The monument marks the downtown area and a historic center, which includes the Federal courthouse and a brand new library, as well as several large churches and businesses. Downtown houses and abundance of retail stores and restaurants, as well as an increasing residential population that has moved into remodeled office buildings and historic structures. For a fun time of shopping and dining, visitors and residents alike can venture into nearby University City and the Delmar Look, where one can find a plethora of shops and dining places, as well as the entertainment venue Tivoli Theatre. As far as green space, prospective residents need not despair the City of St. Louis features over 100 parks, with amenities like sports facilities, playgrounds, concert areas, picnic areas and even lakes. The largest outdoor public space is Forest Park, with 1,400 acres of land, making it nearly twice the size of Central Park in New York City. Aside from inviting to plenty of leisurely recreation, Forest Park houses five major institutions: The St. Louis Art Museum, St. Louis Zoo, Missouri History Museum, St. Louis Science Center and the Muny Amphitheater. St. Louis is home to a variety of professional sports teams, including the St. Louis Cardinals (baseball), St. Louis Rams (football), and the St. Louis Blues (hockey). Together they have won an impressive number of National League- and World Series titles as well as a few NFL championships, including one Super Bowl in 2000. As far as higher education, the city boasts two national research universities; Washington University in St. Louis and St. Louis University. The Washington University school of Medicine in St. Louis is a great source of pride for the community, as it has ranked among the top 10 medical schools in the country.
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