The Library Springfield-Greene County Library District Springfield, Missouri
Local History

Old Landmarks on the Public Square

 Click to enlarge.Daily Herald, April 11, 1883, page1.

The old land marks disappearing.  Tearing down the old frame buildings in the Southeast corner of the square.  Who built them and what they were used for.
"The style and character of a city’s buildings keeps accurate pace with the mental and financial status of its inhabitants and there is no stronger evidence of prosperity than to see the primitive hovels giving way to magnificent structures of brick and stone.  Springfield affords just now a conspicuous example of the metamorphosis to which attention is invited.
"The following reminiscences concerning the old buildings now disappearing from the Southeast corner of the square were gleaned from the memories of our pioneer citizens:
"The old frame building recently torn down near the southeast corner of the square, preparatory to the erection of McDonald’s fine brick building now being completed, was built about the year 1838, by R.J. McElhaney.  It was first used for a dry goods store by W. B. Logan & Co., afterward it was occupied for the same purpose by Sheppard & Jaccard.  This firm was succeeded by McElhany & Jaccard, who occupied the building for many years, extending to about 1861.  It was last used for a millinery store, by Mrs. Simmons, in whose possession it remained until last autumn, when it yielded to the spoiler.
"The small frame still standing in the extreme corner was erected by Wm. Massey in 1846 and occupied first by a Mr. Andrews as a saloon.  After the death of Andrews his widow remained in the house selling cakes and pies till five or six years ago, since when it has been used for sundry purposes by various individuals.
"In 1842, C. B. Holland & Brother built a little frame house on the lot between McDaniel’s brick and the old frame on the corner, where they sold dry goods and clothing for a quarter of a century.  It has been subsequently occupied for many purposes till tree years ago, since when it has been the office of Hubbard & Partridge, insurance agents.  In 1870 it became the property of Mrs. Katie Keet, from whom it was purchased two months ago by Dr. Ish.  A few days later Mr. Townsend became its possessor and is preparing to erect a magnificent building on the site.
"The frame house now owned and occupied by Mrs. Worrell was built for a tailor shop by Dugan and Rice in 1838.  This property, together with all that lying west as far as South Street, was purchased in 1850 by Johnson & Morris who subsequently sold out to Sheppard & Kimbrough.
"In about 1852 Hugh Stewart built a little frame on a portion of the lot where the wholesale grocery store of G.D. Milligan is now situated.  This frame was originally occupied as a tin shop.  East of this stood another small frame used by Dr. Shackelford as a dry goods store till about 1861.  Still further east was a little house built in 1845 and occupied by Hackney & Farrier as a hattery.  The site of this establishment is now covered by the saddle and Harness establishment of C. B. Moore."

The above photograph is from the Library's collection.  It was donated to the Library and has the date 1860 written on it. 

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