It’s one of those towns that looks as if it should have many more people than it does, based on the size of the downtown. And it was: 36,000 people in 1930. Peak was 40K in 1940; it’s 25K now.

Sometimes the first picture in the folder stands as a warning, or a portent:


Let’s zoom out:

Perhaps the globes from 1927 are on back order. Well, let’s wander around town and see what there is to see.

This looks like a trap:

“Put ‘doorway to savings’ and they’ll be lured inside!”

It has a nice classical style, but it’s all wrong - like something done in the 50s when the bank president couldn’t let go of the old style, but knew he had to change with the times.

Oh God no don’t drink and design after six hours of Tetris

Really, it’s as if the building looks like it wants to pat you on the head and crush you because it doesn’t know its own strength.

What is this, the OUMB Capitol of the Midwest?

Ah, I see: it’s grafted on a fine older building, and at least has the decency to use the same hues.


Our previous century, defined


That’s quite the wedding cake.

Restraint was not an option. We don’t think of 1874 as being particularly flamboyant, because didn’t everyone wear six layers of wools and husbands never saw their wives’ ankles? It came out in other ways.


New or rehab, that’s a nice addition to downtown. Really: we’re tired of it, but at the time, that looked crisp and fresh.



We’re used to windows being human-scaled, so the ones on top look like they’re floor to ceiling. Evidently not, and they’re huge.


Annnd . . . what's up with that fire escape?

Say, I hear the Google cars are comin’ to town. Can you put out some cones to frame my archaic sales pitch?

Calculators. Adding machines.

I just like the way it looks.


White marble with striations was super-classy for a while; the glass hue is a different touch.

Sweet Martha’s Cookies, how many banks does a town need

More evidence of gradual vampirism; they had to brick up the windows and build a dark building with aggregate sides to keep out the deadly sun


There’s always that one guy.


The building look like it should house the Lincoln Museum, since it seems to be wearing a stovepipe hat.

The metal screen on the left doesn’t seem to be part of a particularly enthusiast post-war rehab.


The one on the right seems vaguely ashamed by the classical first floor.

What, we may ask, was the purpose of the space between the two doors?



The saddest shot of the tour


No, that’s not a mysterious building at all, and certainly wasn’t constructed by men who worshipped the old Egyptian gods and built a pyramid in the meeting hall upstairs

Study of a cornice loss in three acts

Every family has that last child who just went her own mad way