CORKE BUILDING


  
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24102 (601) W. Lockport Street – Corke Building (1912)

The speculation is that this building was built as part of the development of the Lincoln Highway through Plainfield. This is a two-story brick building with dark red colored face brick and Chicago common brick on the side and rear elevations. The storefront has an original steel beam with rosettes and period appropriate wooden bulkheads and windows. The entry door is angled at the corner and a smaller storefront matching the Lockport Street one is located halfway down the east elevation. The upper façade includes two windows with limestone lintels and sills. The cornice consists of two bands of purple-colored brick corbels and soldier courses with a limestone cap. The building retains excellent integrity.

 

Charles Corke was a blacksmith who rented the corner building, built by Elisha Wood in 1847. In 1895, he bought the corner lot building from John Willard for $500 and ran his blacksmith shop until he retired in 1910.  In 1912, Charles tore down the wood–framed building that Wood had built and built the building that stands now.

 

The building served as a confectionary shop with a cigar factory on the second floor through the 1920s and directly marketed to travelers on the highway.  An illuminated sign in the window declared it the “Lincoln Highway Headquarters.” The storefront housed furniture stores in the 1930s, including Pence’s Furniture Mart and the Hale Furniture Store after 1936. After 1939, the building housed a farm implement store.  The east elevation storefront was added to allow equipment to be moved in and out of the building. In the 1960s, the storefront was occupied by Kwik Kafeteria, which produced pre-packaged food for sale to offices and in food trucks.



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