The Remaining Part of The Sloane Hotel
Although the corner wing of the Sloane House Hotel was demolished in the late 1940s for construction of the Lasalle’s building, the remaining part of the hotel along West Washington Row was not included in the department store’s development. This section of the Sloane House actually kept operating as a hotel until September 1954, when it was closed by its owners so that the building could be remodeled into “a mercantile structure.” Though the hotel was closed, its two remaining first floor businesses, Schaefer’s Jewelers and The Sloane Bar, remained open.
Original renovation plans for the left over part of the hotel called for it to be reduced from a five story building to a two story one. In the early morning of September 14, 1955, however, the building’s redevelopment was halted when portions of the top two floors under demolition collapsed. While The Sloane Bar was spared damage, the jewelry store was destroyed when “front portions of two floors of the building gave way, burying the front third of Schaefer’s Jewelers under tons of debris, and carrying part of the store and its stock into the basement.” The apparent cause of the collapse was believed to have been an “overloading” of the upper floors “with already removed materials.”
As a result of the collapse city officials ordered the complete demolition of the Sloane House, and this work was finished by late 1957. For about the next 10 years, the site was then used as a parking lot for the downtown area.
The Sloane Block
Several years after building the Sloane House, Rush R. Sloane also constructed the Sloane Block to the west of the hotel along Washington Row. The Sloane Block was a four story commercial building that was home to several notable businesses during its existence including Brohl and Appell Plumbing and Heating, Parkview Barber Shop, and The Kubach and Buderer Pharmacy.
The Savings Building & Loan Company
In June 1968, both the vacant Sloane Hotel site and the Sloane Block were purchased by the Savings Building and Loan Company. Savings Building and Loan began in Sandusky in 1888, and the bank saw its purchase of both properties as a way that it could “do something to improve the downtown area.”
After demolishing the Sloane Block, Savings Building and Loan constructed the current building on this site, which opened in 1970. The bank also used this same building design for its Huron office on Liberty Avenue, which was built as part of that city’s urban renewal project. Savings Building and Loan became the Erie Islands Division of First Federal Savings of Toledo in 1986, but this Toledo bank was ultimately taken over by the U.S. government’s Resolution Trust Company as a result of the savings and loan crisis that occurred in the late 1980s and early 1990s. In September 1991, First Federal Savings of Lorain acquired this branch and continues to operate it today.