The multi-storied home at 481 Laurel Avenue in Saint Paul, Minnesota, is one of three sites in the city that is dedicated to the late, great author F. Scott Fitzgerald who penned such American literary classics as The Great Gatsby and This Side of Paradise.
In comparison to Summit Terrace, otherwise known as F. Scott Fitzgerald House, and the Fitzgerald’s other home in the city, his birthplace is a lovely, if low key landmark. The columned Victorian apartment was home to the infant Fitzgerald until he was two, being raised on the second floor where he had been born. Obviously the residents had no idea who had come to life in the building at the time and when his family moved, there was little remark. As the neighborhood changed, the building began to fall into disrepair and was almost in danger of being torn down until a group of locals made a push to have the building restored in the 1970s. After successfully saving the building the new tenants randomly picked their apartments and the man who moved into the second floor had no idea that he was now living in a landmark.
However it was not long before fans of the author began to show up asking about the apartment. He began letting admirers into his condo to check out the birthplace, growing to enjoy the enthusiasm of the fans. He read the works of Fitzgerald and began picking up bits of info about the author that he would gladly share with anyone who dropped by.
A library group finally added a plaque to the building in 2004, turning the building into an unofficial historic landmark. The apartment is not under any official protection, but for so long as its new tenant lives there, fans of the author can see where all that jazz began.
Know Before You Go
Park on the street and stroll down the sidewalk to admire the stone and gardens at this historic site.