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Commercial Building (Masonic Shiloh Lodge, Dakota Business College)
Andrew McHench, Fargo’s first superintendent of schools, worked with lodge member and architect Charles N. Daniels to accommodate the Masonic Shiloh Lodge in the building. The lodge leased the third story from 1885 to 1889. The dark red brick three-story Victorian Gothic building has a gabled central bay that rises eight feet above an ornate metal cornice carried on four corbeled piers. The metal cornice and finials are painted red to simulate terra-cotta, and a recessed arch contains a pressed-metal name- and date plate. Windows are crowned with segmental arches set on light-colored stone sills and the third-story windows have fixed transoms of colored glass. The building is known for its distinguished role in the history of education in Fargo and the surrounding region. In 1887, Fargo College was established in the building and from 1890 to 1978, Dakota Business College operated here, led by F. L. Watkins, who in 1916 added the wing fronting Main Avenue.
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