Why was I looking for this? What made me go to Lynchburg? That was my first thought when I called up this page, and then I remembered. I'd been looking for a restaurant, and got sidetracked wandering downtown. There wasn't much that seemed unusual, until I found two spectacular locations.

This is not one of them.

It's typical of old downtown with too many sad blocks. It's not the vacancy that hurts as much as the sense of endless vacancy, past and present.

But oh, look! Tree!

A building of impressive solidity:

A hardware concern. The doors look as if they're original. Everything about the facade looks untainted - or the rehab was pulled off and they opened it up again. Hey, we found the doors in the back! Great, put 'em on.

Before the suburbs won, downtown merchants modernized for great justice:

Schewels. Many other stores. Early history:

According to records from the Lynchburg Museum System, eight years later, Elias Schewel opened a furniture store at Twelfth and Main Streets in downtown Lynchburg. The business was incorporated in 1917 and used the slogan, “Let Schewels feather your nest.” The slogan was posted outside the store on what was described in a 1947 newspaper article as a “weather-beaten tin sign.” When asked what happened to the sign, Elliot said, “It’s been gone for years,” adding that the slogan was also used for a radio program the store sponsored in the days before television.

“We used to have a Sunday radio program,” he said. “There was no television then so people listened to the radio and it was called the ‘Schewels Feather Your Nest’ program. That was every Sunday, from 12 to one.”

Wonder what it was like. A little music, some patter.

You get the sense the town had hills. But it makes for some interesting vistas - abstract art, almost.


You know what looks good? This combination. The light thin bricks, the broad white stone, and the green marble. I'm pretty sure it's green.


There's a grown-up, serious look to such structures. Which brings us to . . .



Yes. The Allied Arts Building. Perfect late 20s building - one of those structures that went up as the Depression hit, and showed you what the cities would have looked like if the crash hadn't happened.

Not crazy about the little bay windows, but it's different. Love the screen:


If you squint you can see the details on the nickle trim. I love this building. It's imperfect but it's gorgeous.

But then you wander a few blocks, and . . .




As once it was.