DANGER– The Koenig House (829 East Fourth St.) is in need of immediate repairs. We hope the Alton Museum, which owns it, can attend to it before it gets any worse. It is used as a place to store Museum items. The Museum is facing fines for code ordinance violations. The Wilhelm House (314 Oak) behind the Koenig, also owned by the Museum, has been condemned by the city. The Museum board has a responsibility to maintain their buildings.
Most Endangered: Landmarks Illinois is looking for nominations for its “2022 Most Endangered Historic Places in Illinois”. The deadline is January 10, 2022. For more information click here- https://www.landmarks.org/preservation-programs/most-endangered-historic-places-in-illinois/.
Windows: The AALA has long advocated for owners of historic homes to maintain their original wood windows. One resource for window sash replacement is St. Louis Sash Corporation. For more information go to stlsash.com.
Downtown: Good news! The nomination for the Broadway corridor to become a National Register of Historic Places historic district (actually an addition to the Middletown Historic District) is one step closer to becoming a reality. The nomination was approved by the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency on October 29th. Karen Bode Baxter who wrote the nomination gave a presentation to the IHPA about the importance of this nomination. Now the nomination goes to the U.S. Department of Interior for approval. We won’t know of their decision until after the first of the year. Let’s hope we get the final approval in 2022.
House Tour 2021: The 49th AALA House Tour is available to the public for free. “Then & Now” is a free download from our website. Paper versions of the tour are at the downtown Visitors Center at Piasa and West Broadway. The tour features historic pictures of buildings still standing in Alton. The tour is a drive-by only tour. Except for the buildings which are ordinarily open to the public, you can not go into the buildings. Please consider a donation to the AALA for this free tour. Remember last year’s drive-by tour is still available on our website for free, also. That tour is of Sears and other manufacturer’s kit houses in Alton.
Renovation: Work is being done at the Wise-Olin House at 1128 State Street. It is always good to see a filled dumpster. Another very old building is being renovated in our downtown. Known as the “Railroad Hotel” at 102 West Seventh Street, it has a sign outside for a hair salon.
Downtown: A nomination for the downtown to be a historic district authored by Karen Bode Baxter is now available to the public. Even if you think you know all the history of Alton, it is fascinating reading. The greatest advantage for downtown building owners is that they will be eligible for historic tax credits for renovations they do to their buildings. This …….