Why yes, it is in Filmore County. Why yes, it is named after Millard. Why yes, there is a spring - or least there was in 1855 when they laid out the town. Twenty-five hundred souls, down from 2600 in 1960. That's not a big drop.

This downtown was the product of a town that had fewer than 2000 people. So it ought to be bustling to this day, right?

We'll see.

The corner building is everything we've come to expect, right? The new, or at least recent brick on the ground floor, a shingled overhang in the style we call Buckaroo Revival (again, not my term) and angle parking for that true old Main Street feel.

But where is everyone? Perhaps it's Sunday.

After the war people seemed so impatient with the past. Get rid of it. Cover it up. No one look up! You'll just be disappointed!

I assume that metal facade had a name; otherwise, what's the point?

You know it's a civic building right away, don't you:

The Carnegie Library is now the City Hall. Previously you could go to this building and fight it, but not any more.

Not the standard Carnegie design. Usually there's a Roman-Temple vibe to let you know this is a sacred place of knowledge, but this 1904 version has a flat roof and Romanesque details over the windows above the portico.


Almost perfect.

The glass blocks are regrettable. If there are two styles that don't go together, it's "1880s" and "1930s." Oil and sherbet.

It's the Parsons Block.

It was two buildings side-by-side; now it's two buildings up and down.

One's chiseled off. This one isn't. Wonder what that was all about.

Did the other one say "1887" as well, and they figured "no need to repeat ourselves"? No.

I'm taller than you. HAH now I'm taller than YOU

That poor little building on the left. Completely obliterated. And the awning seems to freeze it out.

A timeless presence, a bit of Rome in a small town - once a bank and always a bank.

Until it's not, and even then it never wants to be anything else.


They know the virtues of a good old sign, restored.

Don't think the Moldstad store is a going concern.

I'd like to think this is a work in progress.


Thirties-or-so ground floor renovation, perhaps even from the 20s. Did they cover everything up, and half fell off? Or did they just put up one half and think "that looks just fine." Because it's an insult to the building.

Here's the town; have a stroll and see what you can find.

Give Spring Valley my regards.