Dividing the City documents the scope, timing, and geography of private racial restrictions on property in St. Louis and St. Louis County. Such restrictions were a key mechanism of racial segregation in the first half of the twentieth century. After the Supreme Court struck down explicitly racial zoning in 1917 (Buchanan v. Warley), local realtors, developers, and homeowners turned to the race-restrictive deed covenant as the next-best strategy.  Deed covenants attached conditions or restrictions to real estate transactions, often in lieu of zoning and building codes (which were not well established until after 1945) by specifying lot setbacks, building materials, garage placement, utility easements and the like.  But in northern and border cities, covenants increasingly focused on controlling the “nuisance” of African American occupancy.  The “uniform restriction agreement” in wide use in St. Louis by the early 1930s sought to “preserve the character of said neighborhood as a desirable place of residence for persons of the Caucasian Race” by prohibited “nuisance” uses of property: homeowners could not “erect, maintain, operate, or permit to be erected, maintained or operated any slaughterhouse, junk shop or rag-picking establishment” or “sell, convey, lease, or rent to a negro or negroes.”