Morganford or Morgan Ford?

If you frequent South Saint Louis, you have no-doubt seen Morganford Road. Stretching north and south from Arsenal at Tower Grove Park to Bayless in South Saint Louis County, the street is quite prominent. That is why it is so perplexing that there is no consistent name given to the street. Is it Morganford or Morgan Ford?

The origin of the street’s name literally comes from the name of a ford. A man by the name of Morgan (first or last name, I don’t know) operated a ford at River Des Peres. The street was named after this man. Despite a recently posted Post Dispatch story to the contrary, Morgan Ford was not a person’s first and last name. It was a literal ford.

I have always used the Morganford spelling myself, as it just seems to fit. Considering the fact that many local organizations and businesses, online mapping services such as Google and Yahoo, and even the postal service recognize this spelling, it seems right. But not so fast. The City of St. Louis officially recognizes the street as “Morgan Ford.”  Local business associations along the strip also recognize this spelling. All those street signs with the “Morgan Ford” spelling aren’t typos.

So what is the “official” name? That depends on who you ask. I am temped to start using the Morgan Ford spelling as the City uses that spelling on street signs, but the lack of postal and online recognition of this spelling holds me back.  This is a blog after all, so maybe I should keep in sync with the rest of the web-world. Which side of this name battle are you on? Me, I guess I am a Morganford man.

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5 Responses to Morganford or Morgan Ford?

  1. Matthew Mourning October 1, 2009 at 2:59 pm #

    I remember reading somewhere that the Board of Alderman passed an ordinance in the mid 1990s adopting an official spelling of “Morgan Ford”. I used to type/write “Morganford” until I saw this.

    • Matt Kastner October 1, 2009 at 3:18 pm #

      Like I said in the article, the City does officially use that name. But the postal service doesn’t, which has lead the the white pages not recognizing it, Google maps, even businesses along the strip. Either the City should work with the postal service on the name or just go back tot he way it was before they changed it. Seems overly complicated to me.

      This whole thing reminds me somewhat of the Interstate 64/Highway 40 issue. No matter what happens, different people are going to recognize different names.

  2. Chris Kuban October 3, 2009 at 9:01 am #

    This debate has been going on for years in the Tower Grove South neighborhood. About 2 years ago, the city changed the signs to a 2 word street. The Business Association and most of the residents use Morgan Ford.

    Please consider coming to the Morgan Ford in Motion Music & Street Festival TODAY, OCTOBER 3rd ->

    Also, anyone can join the ‘Morgan Ford Strip’ on Face book. Here’s the URL:

  3. Lex August 19, 2010 at 11:28 am #

    Google Maps lists it as Morgan Ford near Arsenal. Heading south, shortly after it crosses River Des Peres, it switches to Morganford

    • Matt Kastner August 19, 2010 at 11:33 am #

      I did not notice that. But seeing as how nobody can agree on how to spell it, I find that somehow poetic.

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