These 5 Hutchinson buildings from the 1900s shaped the future of the city
Since the turn of the century, Hutchinson began to grow thanks to three key factors: salt, railroads and grain production.
Reno County Museum chief curator David Reed said these three factors caused Hutchinson’s success in the early 1900s, with dozens of residents building large commercial spaces.
“There’s a reason things are here in Reno County,” Reed said. “There’s a reason Hutchinson had three rail lines at once – I want people to have that sense of community, and that we’re all here because these guys were doing something 100 years ago. .”
The following five buildings are those that Reed considered some of Hutchinson’s most significant historic sites because of their impact on the community, the economy, and the future of the rural town.
After:Celebrate Hutchinson’s 150th anniversary at the mile-long downtown block party on August 18
The Larabee mill
The Larabee Mill, built in July 1908, has been present in Hutchinson for over a century.
Initially, Frederick D. Larabee, president of the Larabee Mills company in the early 1900s, aimed to create a state-of-the-art facility for its time.
According to Sheridan Plowe’s 1917 work, “History of Reno County, Kansas. Its People, Industries, and Institutions,” the mill included 100-foot-tall wheat bins that could store over 50,000 bushels.
In 2022, Anthony and Julie Brawner, owners of Hardcore Fab, purchased the building to expand their business and plan to use all six floors of the century-old building.
After:Century-old Larabee Mill has new tenants: HardCore Fab of Hutchinson
According to the National and State Registers of Historic Places on the Kansas Historical Society website, the Hoke Building on East First Avenue was built in 1910 by James S. Hoke, an Illinois native who turned to Hutchinson to start farming businesses.
Hoke built the downtown offices for grain companies and agricultural traders as wheat became a cash crop in Hutchinson around the turn of the century.
He moved to Hutchinson around the same time construction of the Hoke Building was completed and went on to build over 20 homes along Main Street.
Today, Mark and Phoebe Davenport, owners of Hoke Hotel, LLC, purchased the building last summer to renovate it into a boutique hotel. It is across from the Fox Theatre.
Kansas City’s business partners chose the Hoke because of its location and historic attributes.
“There are a lot of things that we keep,” Mark Davenport said. “There’s a lot of updating code and requirements, but for the whole project, we want to leave what we can leave.”
After:Hoke Building conversion begins: Vacant office space in downtown Hutchinson will become a boutique hotel
Arkansas Valley Intercity Terminal
This small building on East Second Avenue was a station for the Arkansas Valley Intercity Electric Railroad, an electric-powered rail line between Wichita and Hutchinson.
According to the Reno County Museum, the line’s early builders sought to connect the two large populations so that residents and business people could move more quickly between towns.
This did not last long as Hutchinson businesses saw it as a deterrent to Hutchinson residents from shopping in town and visiting Wichita instead for shopping and business.
After:Residents of Hutchinson can be part of the city’s 150th anniversary photo shoot downtown this month
In January 1904, the International Harvester building was nearly complete after only two months of construction. The 45,000 square foot building housed International Harvester, an agricultural manufacturing company.
“It symbolized at the time the spectacular importance of grain and production, all that, in Reno County,” Reed said. “It was Hutch’s largest building at the time, and it centered around creating agricultural implements.”
In a 1904 Hutchinson News article found by the Reno County Museum, it took 62 brick train cars, 40 stone train cars, and 26 wooden train cars to construct the massive building.
Today, the building is used as a warehouse on Washington Street and Avenue D. More than a century later, the building remains downtown.
Colladay hardware company
Over 130 years ago, in 1885, Frank Colladay founded the Colladay Hardware Company.
According to the Colladay Hardware website, the business started in the Main Street storefronts, but eventually purchased the building on Second Avenue and Plum Street in the mid-1910s.
The company continues at 2516 E. 14th Ave. as Colladay Hardware Co. after Western Supply Company, Inc. acquired the century-old company in 2002.