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Garnavillo (see also Elkader)

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Within Garnavillo's downtown, close to the junction of US 52 and route C17, is the Farmers State Bank Building (1915, now the Garnavillo Savings Bank). The small brick-clad elongated box reads as a Prairie-style bank building, primarily because of its cast-stone Sullivanesque ornament. Two piers divide the central window into three parts, and the capitals and impost blocks of these piers bear Sullivan-inspired ornament. The wide lintels over the balanced composition of the entrance to the left and a window to the right also display variations on this ornament.

On Washington Street one will come across the former First Congregational Church of 1866. The style of this brick building is Greek Revival. Since 1966 the building has been used as the Garnavillo Historical Museum. It is open to the public. Also on Washington Street, facing the town square, is the 1949 High School Gymnasium, a brick Streamline Moderne building that should have been built a decade earlier.

Two miles southeast of Garnavillo, on US 52, is the 1877 William Reinhardt house. Its design is that of a simple one-and-a-half-story brick cube, covered by a low-pitched gable roof. The balanced placement of the windows and doors, which have segmental-arched heads, and the return of the roof at the gable eaves convey the feeling that this is a late Federal-style dwelling, which one would have supposed had been constructed in the 1850s.

Writing Credits

David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim

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