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Just north of Big Bear Creek and 5 miles south of the Iowa River is the small railroad town of Ladora. In addition to housing a number of grain elevators, it also contains a picture-postcard example of architecture of the Beaux-Arts Classical tradition in the late teens and early 1920s. This is the Ladora Savings Bank building on the north side of Main Street, designed c. 1921 by C. B. Zalesby. He provided the bank with a temple form in antis and an entrance defined by a pair of fluted Roman Doric columns. These columns support a wide entablature with guttae and a suggestion of tri-glyphs. Above this is a substantial false cornice. Adding dignity and authority to the building is the slight hint that it is on an elevated podium with a flight of stone stairs leading up to the entrance. The building is of brick with limestone for its extensive trim, including the large horizontal name plate of the building projecting above the surrounding parapet walls. Since the building is freestanding, with a raised lawn on three sides, the architect has carried his entablature and cornice around three sides of the building.

Writing Credits

David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim

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