Thursday, February 16, 2012

Past and Present Threefer: Unity Building, Washington and Pearl, Built 1917

The Unity Building at 30-36 N. Washington occupied the onetime spot of Ypsi's storied "Ark" building. In the first photo, taken around 1915 shortly after the Ark's destruction, in the right background one may see the painted staircase of "Gaudy's Bitter-Sweet Chocolate Shop," formerly the Washtenaw Home Telephone Co.

The second photo taken around 1920 or so shows the new Unity Building, and also shows Gaudy's. A marquee on the Unity Building advertises "H. Hutchins & Co.," a notions shop. On the northernmost window of the side facing Washington St. may be seen the Miller photography studio.

In 1924, a year after the Hotel Huron (Centennial Center) just across Pearl Street was built, the Unity Building housed these tenants in addition to the notions shop and photo studio: osteopath John Garrett, chiropractor Arthur Bourget, insurance agents John Crampton and Edward Crawford, Ye Corset Shop, dentists Don Moe and Hugh Morrison, Edna Hickman's children's wear store, doctors Harold Barss and Walter Wright, the Illinois Life Insurance Co., the Christian Science Reading Room, Tweedie & Gibson barbers, and the Goodrich Hair Shop.

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