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United States Post Office Building (now Decorah Public Library)

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now Decorah Public Library
1910, James Knox Taylor. Southeast corner of Main and Winnebago streets

A Tuscan temple front with four columns opens to the north on Main Street, and a bank of high arched windows and a central door faces east on Winnebago Street. Both entrances have been left intact with their stairs, platform, and accompanying cast-iron light standards in place. The stone surface of the building has been kept smooth, and the openings are articulated by a thin, cut-in line designating the frame. The Decorah Post Office illustrates how many individual designs John Knox Taylor and his staff were able to devise within the Beaux-Arts Classical tradition. The recycling of the building into a library is a successful example of adaptive reuse.

Writing Credits

David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim


What's Nearby


David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim, "United States Post Office Building (now Decorah Public Library)", [Decorah, Iowa], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Iowa, David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim. New York: Oxford University Press, 1993, 375-377.

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