Around Downtown, Galesburg, Illinois

Postcard View of Downtown Galesburg, Early Twentieth Century

Whiting Hall the Italianate style building above and below, was originally part of Knox College and functioned as a women’s seminary. The central core is from 1854-7, with the east wing added in 1885 and the west wing added in 1895, when it received its current name. It is now senior housing.

The Knox County Courthouse was designed by E.E. and built between 1884-6 in a Romanesque Revival style like many of the prominent buildings built after the Civil War.

The land was donated by the city to encourage the relocated of the county seat; it was originally in Knoxville.

Compare much of the ornament to the Central Congregational Church.

The First Baptist Church of Galesburg is further up Cherry Street from the courthouse.

At some point a Modernist addition was added.

There is an interesting row of buildings along Cherry Street.

The former city hall opened in 1905, designed by William Wolfe.

Unfortunately, like many cities, the beautiful railroad depots, such as the one below, have all been demolished.

Postcard Photo of Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad Depot, 1910.

The stunning Orpheum Theater, which opened in 1916, shows that there could be so much street life in downtown.

But. There. Are. So. Many. Parking lots! You do not need to have half of your downtown to be parking lots for the other half that are buildings. People will find places to park if there are things to do. But it’s hard to have critical mass of jobs and activities if half of your downtown is gone.

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