McLear Block and Annex - Lacombe, AB
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member T0SHEA
N 52° 27.789 W 113° 43.863
12U E 314471 N 5816060
Quick Description: Built in 1911-1912, this business block was first owned by an American baseball player, Frank McLear.
Location: Alberta, Canada
Date Posted: 8/20/2018 3:18:48 PM
Waymark Code: WMZ0FW
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member GeoKs
Views: 2

Long Description:
As a baseball player, Frank McLear must not have a superstar as he doesn't appear in the Baseball Register. In any event, after arriving in Lacombe McLear was able to purchase the lots which had been occupied by the Victoria Hotel, which burned in 1911. After selling lots on which the Royal Bank and the Denike Block were built, he had the McLear Block and the McLear Annex constructed on the remaining lot.

Initially a pool hall, this was soon moved to the basement of the building, after which a men's furnishings store occupied it from 1914-1990. The small annex to the west was first a real estate office, later a barber shop. Today the annex is home to Western Business Solutions, while the McLear Block is occupied by a clothing store and a crafts store.


The McLear Block, located adjacent to the McLear Annex and the Royal Bank, was built between 1911 and 1912 by local builder and contractor George P. Vickers for local businessman Frank McLear. Interestingly, Frank McLear had been a famous American baseball player prior to his arrival in Lacombe. McLear purchased the entire area of land that had formerly been occupied by the Victoria Hotel, which was destroyed by fire on New Year’s Day, 1911. The Royal Bank purchased the land for the Royal Bank building in Lacombe in 1912 and Denike purchased the land for his building from McLear in 1913.

McLear had two buildings constructed on his land, known as the McLear Block and the McLear Block Annex. The McLear Block is a predominant masonry building, which was initially used as a Pool Hall, though the tables were relocated to the basement of the building upon the advent of World War One and a gentlemen’s clothing store took its place. Watt Hay’s Gent’s Furnishings remained in the west side of the McLear Block building from 1914-1990. The McLear Annex is a small, one-storey masonry structure located in the heart of downtown Lacombe adjacent to the McLear Block. The McLear Annex was occupied by the office of F.S. Lewis, a local real estate agent in 1912 and later became a barbershop.

The exterior of the McLear Block features a simple long, low profile punctuated by a pediment stamped with the name of the building and date of construction. The building remains as a significant part of the downtown collection of historic masonry buildings in the Town of Lacombe. The small McLear Annex building remains a prominent structure in downtown Lacombe. Characterized by its masonry construction, corbelled cornice, and tall false-front, the building is an interesting and unique local landmark.
From the Lacombe Municipal Heritage Survey

Photo goes Here

Type of Marker: Cultural

Sign Age: Historic Site or Building Marker

Parking: Street parking is available on the block

Placement agency: Town of Lacombe

Visit Instructions:
When entering a new log for visiting a waymark please provide a picture of your visit to the location and if you have an interesting alternate area or sign photo include that.

Please include any thoughts or historic information about the area that the marker may represent.
Search for... Google Map
Google Maps
Bing Maps
Nearest Waymarks
Nearest Alberta Heritage Markers
Nearest Geocaches
Nearest Benchmarks
Create a scavenger hunt using this waymark as the center point
Recent Visits/Logs:
There are no logs for this waymark yet.