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This is a great photo as it was taken before all the frame buildings were replaced with brick. Also, This angle shows us the T. L. Tullis livery barn behind the Huggins & Saville building.
I’m guessing this picture was taken by Mount Ayr photographer, M. G. Maxwell, from his upstairs studio at 107 S. Fillmore. Maxwell moved to this location in March 1899, so I’m sure this picture is after 1898. It’s definitely before 1903, but we’ll get to that in a minute.
The two-story, brick building on the corner was built in 1890 by A. A. Huggins and J. H. Saville for their dry goods business. This building housed many businesses before it collapsed into the street in the early morning hours of June 2, 1975. The Mount Ayr Record-News office occupies this corner today.
The next building to the right is the bakery and restaurant of Amos F. “Fatty” Collins. This frame building was replaced by a two-story, brick building in the second half of 1902. Mr. Collins would operate here until his passing in 1933. He did lease the business out a couple of times but always served as the baker for the firm known famously as the Palace of Sweets.
The next building to the right was the millinery of Mrs. J. T. Merrill. The lot was owned by Martha Timby, widow of builder William Timby, and she built a two-story, brick block at the same time as the Collins building, late 1902.
The street address here is 116 W. Madison and the first occupant was M. A. Campbell with his grocery store. Campbell was here only about six months as Jodon & Crecelius moved here in August 1903 with their clothing store. J. W. Mapel & Son bought that firm in March 1907.
The next building, partially obscured by a tree limb, was built in 1897 by John Blauer as a variety store. This brick building still stands today and is occupied by Aunt Jennie’s Attic.
The building on the far right with the white canopy was built in 1891 by H. H. Wilson. This building has had some very well known businesses in it including W. B. Cunning and Company. I believe it is an attorney’s office today.