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Miles Davis’ childhood home will be a museum and educational center

Renovation of the house in East St. Louis expected to be finished this year

If you know jazz history, there is no conversation about the genre that doesn’t include the late great composer and trumpeter Miles Davis. Wouldn’t it be great to be able to see artifacts from where he grew up and other pieces of his journey in one place?

One organization is in the process of making this happen. A nonprofit agency called HOME (House of Miles East St. Louis) started a project to restore Davis’ childhood home at 1701 Kansas Ave. in East St. Louis, Illinois.

miles davis home before

The home, where Davis lived in the 1920s, will be turned into a museum and education center. The renovation project was started in 2011 and is expected to be completed later this year.

The organization started a GoFundMe campaign to help finance the project. “We feel with the renovation of this home, this will be a sanctioned place to socialize, tour and develop artistic/cultural skills, which will be useful throughout many lives,” the group wrote on its funding page.

According to an article on the St. Louis Public Radio website, the interior of the one-story structure is skeletal — all bare studs and dust, but the developers hope the home will eventually inspire children.

The structure is intended to be a repository of artifacts from Davis’ time in the city and preserve stories from Davis’ childhood. Organizers also expect to develop educational programs that include music classes, history lessons, and community stewardship targeted at 6- to 12-year-olds. The founders are working out a partnership with the local school district to develop programs in the classroom and at the museum.

Check out these photos of the house:

Miles Davis childhood home without siding.

Miles Davis childhood home without siding.


miles davis home 2

Kelley Evans is a digital producer at Andscape. She is a food passionista, helicopter mom and an unapologetic Southerner who spends every night with the cast of The Young and the Restless by way of her couch.