In 2005 or there about, rumors abounded that Galloway was thinking of buying, was about to buy, had already bought this building, but the rumors turned out to be false. For years, the possible sale of this building--out of place in a residential neighborhood--has been the stuff of hearsay and speculation. It was for sale. It wasn't for sale. A sculptor who made giant works in metal wanted to buy it for studio and living space. Someone who designed outdoor gear for women talked of using it as an atelier and retail shop. There were perennial tales about interested buyers and curiously vacillating sellers.
Finally, this week, Gossips has received confirmation that the building has been sold. The new owners are Nick and Carrie Haddad. Nick Haddad told Gossips that they planned to convert the space into artist's studios, but his first priority was to improve the exterior appearance of the building. Haddad shares Gossips' fondness for the Art Deco design of the entrance and a curiosity about what the building's original doorway looked like.
Some interesting things are known about the site of the building. From 1792 to 1837, before Allen Street (then called Federal Street) extended east beyond Second), it was the location of the first First Presbyterian Church. In the early decades of the 20th century, Mrs. Isaac Newton Collier, who lived in the Greek Revival mansion across the street (now St. Michael's Ukrainian Orthodox Church), owned the lot and maintained it as a formal garden. George Duguay, whose father was Mrs. Collier's chauffeur, tended the garden when he was a boy.
Little, however, is known about the building itself. Searching for some information, Gossips discovered this advertisement, which appeared in the Chatham Courier for July 24, 1947. One line in this appeal for employees by a children's wear manufacturer not only reveals the building's original use but also provides a clue about when the building was constructed: "BRAND NEW MODERN FACTORY. Built Especially For You."
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