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Federal Building - Helena Historic District - Helena, MT
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member BK-Hunters
N 46° 35.393 W 112° 02.423
12T E 420300 N 5160116
Quick Description: A primary contributor to the Helena Historic District, the Federal Building was Helena's main post office for 73 years.
Location: Montana, United States
Date Posted: 11/10/2018 9:29:39 PM
Waymark Code: WMZGVK
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member Math Teacher
Views: 0

Long Description:
While not completed until 1904, a proposal for the Helena Federal building, shown here, was already extant by 1895. Map goes Here When the American Guide Series writers stopped at the Federal Building it was still Helena's main post office but had already received its additions, so it no longer looked like the painting above. Following is their quick impression of the building.
2. The FEDERAL BUILDING, Park Avenue at West end of 6th Avenue, is a four-story Romanesque structure of granite and sandstone. A wide flight of stone steps leads to the main floor. In 1932-33 the building was enlarged and remodeled, but the original lines were left unchanged.
From Montana, a state guide book, Page 165
The architect, who may or may not have been James Knox Taylor, chose Renaissance Revival as the building's style. In 1933 a $320,000 addition was made to the west side of the building, then, in the summer of 1935 earthquakes shook the town severely damaging many buildings, even destroying some. The Federal Building was spared, however, sustaining minor damage, which was repaired in short order.

The construction of a new post office in 1976 and a new Federal Building in 1977 made this building available for the offices of the City of Helena and Lewis & Clark County, which remain in the building today. It is now known as the City-County Building.

See and read a full history of the old Federal building at Helena History.

Still standing strong, [the Federal Building] serves today as the City-County Building. It's been a popular postcard subject over the past century, and was even pictured on souvenir china. The supervising architect was James Knox Taylor.

The U. S. Post Office occupied the first floor, with banks of mailboxes and several service windows in the lobby. Just prior to the completion of this building in 1904, the Post Office occupied the entire ground floor and the basement of the Power Block, at the corner of 6th and Main.

In 1976, the main post office moved to 2300 Harris St., just off Cedar St. on the city's northeast side. With the opening of an ugly new Federal Building in 1977 at the south end of Last Chance Gulch, offices of the City of Helena and Lewis & Clark County moved into the Park Avenue building.

The large addition to the rear (west side) of the building was completed in 1934 at a cost of $320,000 (about $5 million in 2006 dollars). It is faced with Columbus sandstone quarried in Stillwater County, the same stone used for the state capitol. In the fall of 1934, the grounds were plowed up in preparation for the extensive landscaping of 1935, performed by the State Nursery and Seed Co. of Helena. The fence was replaced by a hedge of Russian Olive.
From Helena History

Photo goes Here

Book: Montana

Page Number(s) of Excerpt: 165

Year Originally Published: 1939

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