We’ll first look at the east side of North Second Street, heading north. The two buildings on the right are the Greeley and Cutlery buildings, respectively.
Back in 1980, the two buildings were shabby, looked abandoned, and the Cutlery Building was still sporting a fire escape like something you would see in the Lower East Side of Manhattan.
But their beauty was still unmistakable. I’m afraid that very cool sign that says “Tents” was probably not viewed as being historic and was destroyed.
You can see the first floors of both buildings below in 1979 looking south towards the Eads Bridge and before the now-demolished parking garage in the Arch grounds.
And here is the view, approximately, today.
Today, the buildings look much different, of course.
First up is the Cutlery Factory, which was once owned by Henry Shaw, but it was not location of his famous dry good store which made him so wealthy before the Civil War.
The next building to the left, or north, is the Greeley Building, which is probably from the 1870s, which was a wholesale grocery business.
The two buildings have distinctive cornices, one made of pressed tin, and the other made of brick and tin.
Moving north across Lucas Avenue, there’s more intact streetscapes, with one notable exception.
Apparently the old Judge Coffee Company Building had some need for rebuilding, and this artist’s concept shows the in-fill. Looking above and then below, you can see that what was planned was largely built. The pedestrian projections were a little off.
The new building that was built as in-fill matches the massing of the other historic structures, but it is simple in ornamentation.
There are two more well-preserved cast iron storefronts that complete the block before we reach Morgan Street. Then there is the giant parking lot up to the MLK Bridge.
The photograph below is possibly located somewhere in the general area, but due to the substantial loss in the historic fabric of the area, it is hard to identify where it is exactly. It is not the 600 block of North Second, I don’t think, but maybe further north?