"The Ojibwa were the earliest known residents of the Neillsville area," says Wikipedia. European-derived settlers showed up in 1845, including Mr. James O'Neill. Hence the name. He built a sawmill, and the town got going. Let's see what his descendents built and left for the future.

Now this is a Main Street, isn't it?

Flags, a bank, century-old facades that don't look degraded or smothered in shingles. Well, smothered entirely. The one in the middle next to the building with the blue awning was dealt a bad hand.

The blue awning is the reason we're here. We'll get around to that.


Makes you wonder if there's anything behind it:

Were those windows ever real?


When archeologists discovered Pompeii, they dug until they hit a wall, then dug down along the wall - destroying the frescoes in the process.

Don't know why i thought of that. Anyway:

Badger . . . soap? Perhaps. Makes you wonder how old the building is - obviously there was a building below, lost to fire or collapse, but the sign suggests that the Clark County Press building was constructed later. Otherwise the sight lines for the ad are pretty bad.

Name that newspaper typeface! It's the Mary Tyler Moore font,of course. Peignot.

Sometimes you wonder if they didn't carve out so much for the display areas the top floor would just collapse:



The H & W building, 1872. History page:

During the summer of 1872, Hewett and Woods erected a fine brick building for about ten thousand dollars (on the corner of Hewett and 5th Streets) in Neillsville. On the upper front of the building placed in the brick facing visible yet today, are the letters H&W with number 1872 underneath.

They'd be pleased to see it was still there, but they'd probably be worried that it wasn't rented.


Well, it could be worse.

The recessed doorway was for the apartments - makes sense, but it throws off the symmetry of the facade. The projecting bay was a nice touch, but wouldn't everyone always look up to see if there was someone standing there?

And wouldn't it be odd if there was?

Small town pride: they didn't have to do something with so much ornamentation, but when your town is on the way up you want to announce it to all. Even if the transients are farmers in for Saturday provisionings.

They adored those metal panels. It was as if they were making a border between the present and the pre-war past.

Someone selected the ground floor in Photoshop and used the arrow key to move it 20 pixels to the left:

It's the paint job that makes it look off kilter. The windows tell you that the building next door is part of the same construction. The cornice may have been a way of breaking them up into discrete buildings, or perhaps the building on the left lost its crown to decreptitude.

Again: apartment entrance, off-center retail.

Here's the reason we're doing this town.

I have a collection of labels from this place, believe it or not.

It's a site I will be relaunching later this summer. I redid the entire thing and added the Sniteman labels, then forgot about it.

Anyway, the company's been around for quite a long time:

There's pride and money in that cornice.

We may safely assume there's a 19teens structure under there, and has been making muffled screans since 1972:

The town is starting to go downhill.

I mean, literally:


The two main stylistic traits of Buckaroo Revival: the crappy shingles, and the dreaded diagonal wood.

Ewett Common almost looks as if it got its lower-floor rehab buring the Miami Vice era.

I'm always partial to the side views of small-town buildings, becaue they have so many mysteries.


What purpose did the the ground dloor window serve? What about the little one up on the second floor?


Have a look, if you wish -


- and give my regards to Sniteman's.