Now and then I look at the first picture in the queue, and think - you know, I should see if there’s something better, something more representative. The date on these grabs is almost a year ago, and there’s never any plan when I start taking them - I just screen grab and screen grab until I think I have enough for an entry, and haven’t missed anything.

This was #1.

It’s appalling on every level, but is it fair? Lots of towns have things like this - that stone can be cool, if the building’s modern, but glued to an old commercial structure that has the iron beam revealed and touched up, well, it doesn’t work.

But let’s move along and see what else we can find.


Well, they have 25% of the panels intact, so that’s something. Interesting to see the hue the old building was painted; that seems like a color they’d like in the mid-century front-panel period. The brick sides are all different colors. In short, something for everyone!


Here’s a question for the class: can you tell me which decade this building was constructed? Yes, you in the back.

“Uh - is this a trick question? The 1870s, obviously.”


Wrong! That’s an early 20th century building - say, 1918 - 1928. Just because it was established in 1878 doesn’t mean it was built in 1878.

They weren’t very . . . demonstrative in Liberal, were they.


No, they weren’t.


Can you guess what it was?

I couldn’t. It was a movie theater. Cinema Treasures:

Opened on May 22, 1930, the Plaza Theatre, through poor circumstance, was an operating theater for a very short period of time. Once the Depression began, the theater was closed, but re-opened at the start of World War II and ran throughout the war. After the war, it was closed for a very long time. Eventually, an auto parts store bought the theater, connecting it to an adjoining building for use as a warehouse. The building still stands today, but is still used as a warehouse.


Here’s your downtown-corner view, complete with an old gas station. I think.


What’s that across the street?

I’d swear this was a theater . . . but then no, it couldn’t be. But - but what was it? If I had to bed, I’d say . . .

A fire station. But it’s too Italianate for that.



The front of the Chas Summers building.


Whoever thought that cowcatcher skirt was a good improvement should have been hosswhipped out of town.



And save some leather for the fellow who thought a Buckaroo Revival awning went with a post-war metal screen:


It used to be a movie theater with a grand marquee; not a trace remains.

Another building with the same style of rehab:


Well-preserved store entrance, but man, it must have gotten dark in there. You’d long to see some sunlight.




Suddenly, it’s all redeemed. The Warren Hotel.


That's crazy. That's great.