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Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The Old Federal Building

The Old Federal Building was completed in the late 1880s and is the second oldest civil structure in Missouri. Local congressman William Henry Hatch is credited for rescuing this building when construction was suspended at the second floor due to insufficient funds. Fearing the building would have to be truncated prior to completion, he was able to get additional appropriations through congress in order to complete the building as originally designed. This building takes design cues from the Old Post Office building in Saint Louis, both of which are considered examples of "Second Empire" style. The Oak and Pine hardwood found throughout the interior was supplied in 1888 and retains its natural finish in the large Court Room on the third floor.

Among other tenants, the building housed the Post Office, the Internal Revenue Service, Army and Navy recruiters and even the Prohibition Enforcement Office during prohibition. The upper levels were last occupied by the Navy until they vacated in 1979. Since then it has been sporadically rented out to various short-term tenants but now it is mostly vacant.

Historic photo and information sourced via NROHB nomination form.

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