Sanger Brothers/ Meacham’s Department Store/ Color Tile Building – 515 Houston Street

515 Houston Street [NR*/Sky(NR)], Sanger Brothers/Meacham’s Department Store/ Color Tile Building, 1924-25; c. 1977; 1981-82.  Constructed in 1924-25, on land owned by Lennie and John I. Jarvis, Sanger Brothers opened this new store building on August 29, 1925 to an enthusiastic public response.  Among other services, the store featured an indoor putting green and a complete hospital room with a trained nurse in attendance.  Designed by architect Wiley G. Clarkson and constructed by contractor Harry B. Friedman, the eight-story building has a high stone base, a simple seven-story shaft with window groupings separated by unbroken vertical piers, and an elaborate terra cotta cornice.  The ground-floor storefront has been extensively remodeled, and the original wood sash windows were replaced about 1977.  Sanger Brothers operated here until they moved to their new store at 410-12 Houston St.  (CBD 86) in 1929.   Lerner Shops occupied a portion of the building from 1930 until it moved to 601-03 Houston St. (CBD 89) in 1947.  Meacham’s, another department store, was located here from 1947 until 1971.  Tandy Corporation acquired the building in 1968 when it purchased Meacham’s Department Store and leased it to Color Tile for their administrative offices in 1981.  The building was sandblasted and interior office renovation undertaken at that time.  It may be eligible for the National Register following restoration of the original window configuration and the ground floor facade.  The building is also a contributor to the proposed Downtown Skyscrapers National Register Thematic Group.


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