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History Connection

History Connection: The Art Center Building Revisited

History has always been an important part of Washington, and especially the downtown area. Many of the red brick houses that line the streets are more than hundred years old and hide interesting stories or dark secrets. Have you ever wondered what it would be like to revisit the past? No time machine needed, just the help of the Washington Historical Society. With the kind assistance of Marc Houseman, the Museum Director, we are setting the beginning of a new section of the blog, called History Connection. Why not start with something familiar? I present you The Art Center the way it used to be!

Voss Bazaar, 1876 (currently The Art Center Gallery and Custom Framing) Robert Voss completed this structure in 1876. Local tradition is that the Bank of Washington used this building from 1877 until 1880.


In the late 1800s and early 1900s, the Voss family ran their bazaar store here. They had a little bit of everything - from musical instruments to fancy hats.

During much of the twentieth century, this building was home to Kruels 5 and 10 cent store, a favorite among Washington children.

Santa made his annual appearance at this store, and candy, toys and knick-knacks were a specialty.

Santa Comes to Town, December 23rd, 1928

Click here for current pictures of The Art Center.

About Slava

I am a twenty-something Bulgarian girl in the USA, re-discovering the world through the lens.


3 Responses to “History Connection: The Art Center Building Revisited”

  1. Slava, What a great project! You have a unique and charming perspective on things!

    Posted by Gaile Harms | November 23, 2011, 7:27 pm
  2. Love the dog in the second photo. Something for your “Downtown Pets” section!

    Posted by Julia | April 2, 2012, 5:44 pm

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