A mid-60s testament of faith in downtown Minneapolis. At night you could look up and see the bank’s symbol, the Green Tree, glowing at the top of the building. The bank’s branches in the suburbs were strange round buildings, top heavy and green, meant to carry forth the Green Tree symbol into the ‘burbs. They were like the Weatherball, but not quite in the same league.

Midwest Federal went bust in the late 80s for all the usual S&L reasons. The owner suffered legal opprobrium. The branches were sold. The banking area of this building is now a Barnes & Noble, two busy floors of books.

This is probably an ugly building. Its decoration makes a nod to the Gothic terra-cotta effusions of the Medical Arts building next door, and for a building of its time, that’s quite a step. It’s nothing special. No one pays it much notice. But every longtime Minneapolitan knows that this is where Mary worked, and if they ever tried to knock it down, people would throw themselves in front of the bulldozers. I’d be first in line.