Thursday, February 9, 2017

Penfield Avenue Bank – Then & Now

Last month, regular contributor Rick Kurish emailed me with a suggestion for a post. He wrote, "As I was looking through Ebay today, I ran across an old postcard of the Penfield Avenue Bank (shown above).

"As you probably know, it was a substantial building on Broadway, across from the old location of St. Joseph Hospital. Although the bank building itself is long gone, the site is easily identified by the four stone columns that supported the front facade. These were left standing on the site when the building was demolished, and for all intents appear to be the remains of ancient Roman ruins. It might make a before and after subject for your blog."

Rick’s suggestion was a good one, because I hadn’t seen this particular hand-tinted postcard before. Surprisingly, I had given the bank the “then and now” treatment back in 2013, but with an illustration (show below), not a photo.
(This was the post on which my older brother hilariously observed that,"Judging from the drawing, I think the original Lorainites must have been about 8 inches tall back then. And their horses too.”)
As it turns out, the original Penfield Avenue Bank bank (which later changed its name to the Central Bank Co.) was a favorite subject of a lot of postcards, including this one photographed by Willis Leiter (below).
Anyway, here again is the May 2013 “now” view (below). (Note the traffic lights, a veritable endangered species in Lorain these days.)

 And here’s my shot from last weekend.


Lisa said...

Not knowing much about Lorain, and living in Cleveland, the first time I saw those "Roman ruins" was recently while looking for Fligner's Market. I was taken aback by the stark juxtaposition of the columns against the very modern "Chase" sign, and have since wondered what type of structure those columns once belonged to. Very interesting.

Doug Majka said...

I spoke with a gentleman the other day who bought the former Lorain Novelty building. He told me Chase is going to be closing that branch. I saw the man again today and inquired to what he was going to do with his building, and he said it was going to be a take-out style restaurant.

alan tois said...

they also saved the stained glass from the original building