Twelve thousand souls. History: flashpoint for 1960s Civil Rights strife. (It now has a Black mayor and majority-black City Council.) Lynyrd Skynyrd's plane crashed nearby.

The middle-finger school of courthouse design:

Seems to be missing some information in the middle of the tower.

The stone with the date of completion is photobombing that poor column:

Walking around the side, we see another civic building in the unpopular Crenelated Prison Style.

It looks like the setting for everything Poe ever wrote.

Or is that just us, projecting backwards as we do, ascribing Gothic and Horror themes to old architectural styles because that’s what we grew up seeing? The Victorian homes were associated with ghosts because they were old and decrepit, their styles out of date. Abandoned. There’s nothing inherently scary about the styles at all.

Another look at the main building, which really did put a lot into that tower.

Perhaps a bit too much.

Old, old, old. Thin windows are the giveaway. But looking good.

Our friend the aggregate-covered trash can.

Flinty folk; didn’t seem to go in for that silly ornamentation. Waste of money.

You can read the old storefronts, and see where the glass used to be.

No store ever looked better after they covered it up.

Gosh now what could this have been.

It was the Orpheum, and look at this 80s color scheme.

“We’ll give it a name that will have renters and customers clawing over each other to get in on the excitement."

Well now.

As you know, or don’t, or do and don’t care, I’m not a big fan of rusticated stone, but this adds something unusual to the street. Especially the stained glass in the lunette and oculi.



Not easy to read, this one. But I’d bet the windows were never storefronts. There’s stone on the bottom with basement windows, so I’d say it was built as one big store with apartments (or offices) upstairs.

NBA Players bunk on the second floor, midgets on the third

The original storefront was probably more instructive. The one on the right reminds me of the sculpture that mimics with astonishing skill the effect of gauze drapery over a maiden’s face.

There’s a time capsule.

Probably Wein’s since the renovation covered up the old building, and again, I’m in favor of that. Gives the town a post-war lift. And look at those display cabinets in the middle - it’s so rare to see them actually in use.

Street art for the people:

It took me a while to figure out the middle one. Inasmuch as one can.

Don’t know if the one on the left is an abstract, or someone tore out the sheet of paper and left fragments.

Minimum effort bank, meet minimum effort Federal embassy:

The Ross Memorial Library, a lovely classical structure that only seems a bit out of proportion.

I can, if necessary, invent some inspirational rationales for this, and what it might symbolize.

But I really don’t want to.