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Village Record Building

"Selected for a Bricks & Mortar Preservation Award for the excellent restoration and adaptive reuse of one of West Chester’s oldest and most historic buildings, and one whose continued existence was doubtful before the restoration was undertaken."

Owner/Developer: Zukin Realty, Stanford Zukin, owner

August 24, 2011

West Chester, PA -- Located at 15 North Church Street in the heart of the West Chester Downtown Historic District, the Village Record Building is among densely grouped three-story structures built in row-form.

It was constructed at the beginning of West Chester's second period, circa 1833, as the Odd Fellows Lodge and was later the site of two important and long-standing businesses. From 1834 until 1920, the Village Record, regarded as an influential newspaper, operated in the building. The newspaper was purchased by Honorable Henry S. Evans in 1834, and continued in operation until its last owner, the notable Senator T. Lawrence Eyre (1862-1926) printed the final issue on April 22, 1920. The newspaper served as a vehicle for the Federalist Party, later the Whig Party, and finally the Republican Party.

The second long-standing occupant was Joel’s Ladies Apparel from 1929 to 1990. When Joel’s became the tenant, the entire first floor was modified by extending individual windows down to grade to form longer display windows for retail. The upper-stories of the building remained intact.

After Joel's left, the structure remained vacant for twenty years and consequentially suffered substantial damage from neglect. In 2010, Zukin Realty purchased the property and began a rehabilitation to restore the building to its original eloquence in the Classical Revival style. The facade has been restored to its patterned mastic, incised to imitate ashlar masonry.

Residential units now occupy the upper floors while the first floor is used for commercial purposes.

Village Record, c. 1833Village Record, 2011

 
 

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