LET’S EXPLORE MARKET STREET STARTING AT COLUMBUS AVE.
WEST MARKET ST.
When you get to the corner of Market Street – look left (West). You are standing next to the parking garage for the County building where you probably parked. This was once the site of the Sloane House Hotel. This block once housed a fire station, City Hall, a drug store, a savings and loan and even a cigar factory.
On the left or south side of the street…..
THE FIRST POST OFFICE – The city’s first Post Office was located on SW corner of Columbus Ave. and Market St. (the building on the left n the picture), now the parking garage. Although mail service began in Sandusky in 1820, this first post office was built in 1854 when the U.S. Treasury Department purchased the corner. READ MORE
OLD CITY HALL & THE CENTRAL FIRE STATION – This ornate building was located on the south side of Market St. (your left). Sandusky was founded in 1818 as a village and it incorporated as a town in 1824. The community became a city March 6, 1845. When the Central Fire Dept. moved out, it became the City Hall. There is a link to a history of Sandusky’s Fire Dept. here if you want to READ MORE
THIRD NATIONAL BANK – 20 W. Market St. – Founded in 1872 as the Third National Bank, it later became the Third National Exchange Bank and was located on this street from 1914 until the mid 1960’s. READ MORE
RIEGER HOTEL – All the way to the end of the street was the Rieger Hotel was opened by businessman John Rieger in 1912. A fifth floor was added in 1917 to increase the number of rooms in the hotel. READ MORE
SCHADE/OHIO THEATER – corner of Jackson and W. Market Sts. – The Schade Theater opened in 1915. The owner was Sanduskian George J. Schade. According to the local newspaper, the Star-Journal, the theater cost an estimated $100,000, a very substantial sum at the time. READ MORE
As you work your way back to the corner again, look at buildings on the north side of the street…..
This vacant lot once had several large buildings on it. Notable was the Brehm Building. If you look closely towards the right side, you can see a portion of the The Wall. This was once a section of the Brehm Building wall and is now one of Sandusky’s original landscape art location. READ MORE
This is W. Market Street looking east. You can see the cupola of the Cooke building at the far end of the street. Note the unusual street light at the top of the picture.
AS YOU WALK BACK TOWARDS COLUMBUS AVE. …..
THE LAURENCE BUILDING – 129-139 W. Market St – Built c1880, this building was restored in 1978. READ MORE
THE RITTER CIGAR FACTORY AND STORE – In 1864 Henry Ritter established a cigar factory on the second floor of the NW corner of Columbus Ave. and W. Market St. above the Commercial National Bank of Sandusky. READ MORE
GRAY DRUG STORE – this building replaced the bank building that housed the Ritter Cigar Factory. It was located on the NW corner of Columbus and W. Market Sts. READ MORE
EAST MARKET ST.
NOW WE CROSS OVER COLUMBUS AND EXPLORE EAST MARKET ST.
In looking at insurance maps from 1893 – East Market Street was quite the shopping district. On the North Side of the street you could find notions, furniture, upholstery, carpets, a business college, wholesale groceries and a kitchen. In the middle of the block was, surprisingly, a bowling alley.
On the south side of the street there was a saddler, tailor, wallpaper and paint store, undertaker and furniture shop (the coffin shop was in the rear), Smith’s steam laundry, a leather shop, a cigar factory, the Sandusky Journal print and composing room, a plumber, one female boarding house and a saloon.
KEWPEE SANDWICH SHOP – At the end of the block, on the NE corner Market and Wayne Sts. Was a unique little restaurant. Fast food came to downtown Sandusky in 1941. The Kewpee Sandwich Shop opened for business. READ MORE
FEICK BUILDING – 158 – 160 E. Market St. – The Feick Building, Sandusky’s tallest building (eight stories) was designed by Purcell and Feick, a Minneapolis Based architectural partnership formed by two Cornell classmates, one being Sandusky native, George Feick Jr. READ MORE
There are quite a few unresearched buildings between the Columbus St. corner and the Feick Building, including these…
The building on the left, with the bay windows, is the Bittner Building. William H. Dilgart came to Sandusky in 1901, and opened a furniture store in the Odd Fellows building. On March 4, 1905 William H. Dilgart and William P. Bittner formed a partnership, and the company was incorporated in 1907. The business, located on East Market Street, was a retail establishment which sold furniture, floor coverings, stoves, and other household items. After a fire in 1906, the store relocated at Wayne and East Market Streets.
There is no information on these either.
AND ACROSS THE STREET …
THE NORTH SIDE OF MARKET STREET …
LEA BLOCK – 174 – 186 E. Market St. on the SW corner of Wayne and Market Sts. is known as the Lea Block and received its name from James Lea. The first floors of the building were shops while the second floors held offices. The third floor was a ballroom and was once used by the Knights of Pythias Hall. It was built in 1895. READ MORE
THE SCHMIDT BUILDING – The Schmidt Building was once the home of J. L. Hudson Department Store. “The store occupies the SE corner of the handsome stone and brick block which Mr. A. Schmidt, junior, has erected (1894), and contains two floors 100 feet deep and 43 feet wide.” It attests to the importance of Sandusky as a shopping destination. READ MORE
Now look down the street towards Columbus Ave and see how it has changed.
THE GRAEFE BUILDING – The building on the right, is the Graefe building. It once housed the William S. Frankel Store and Sears & Roebuck. The tall building on the left is the Cooke Block in both photos. READ MORE
Surprisingly, not much is known about this charming, small red brick building.