The St. Louis Metropolitan area was once owned by the French. French trappers and French Catholic priests where some of the first Europeans to come to the area. Actually, the city of St. Louis was established in 1764 by a Frenchman, Pierre Laclede, as a French trading post named after the King of France, Louis IX. So to say that the St. Louis area was influenced by the French is historically true. It is fortunate that the French influence can still be seen in a few remaining structures. See the list below.