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  • Writer's picturejohn_dye

Facade Restoration - another historic photo!

Our neighbor Loretta gave us this photo - it is of her husband as a little boy, standing in front of their house with At Random in the background. I set it next to a recent, post siding tear off, photo of At Random. Wow! How little has changed.

The photo itself is adorable. The look on the little boy's face is priceless. Behind the boy is a 1920s-30s snapshot of our building. A lot lot is the same, but there are some interesting differences. First, the rear window moved over about 4 feet, you can still see the evidence of the original window on our facade. You can also see the original size of the windows and there appears to be a third entrance to the building along Delaware (the boarded up door with the transom window above).

There is an angled parapet detail on the front of the building, you can see it poking up over the roof. It's also very cool to see the Delaware House in its original form. It was much smaller but the detail is about the same. (minus several windows along Russel).

I don't know about you but this is one of my favorite things, exploring two different versions of the same scene. Maybe it's all those Highlights magazines I read as a child.

One thing that is barely visible at the far left of the photo is the garage that used to be to the south of At Random. It would have been a tiny structure, just big enough for a model T. Interesting fact, this garage was partially torn down, but the back half lives on as the rear of our waterfall. That's ingenuity!

An copy of the Sanborn Fire Map of the corner of Russell and Delaware (then called Ellen). The blue square is the concrete block garage that is barely seen in the photo above. It is now the location (and foundation) of our fountain.

Here's a photo from 2020, you can see the aging concrete block of the original one car garage. This is now the back of our waterfall. This photo would be from the viewpoint of where our patio is now.

Here are some photos of our waterfall, one of the things that makes our historic cocktail lounge unique. We had it re-built in 2019, it provides such welcoming sight and sound when visiting At Random.

Here's the first startup of last year, always a fun event for us! In MIlwaukee our winters are long so we look forward to all things spring. Waterfalls starting, first patio sittings, the first Cara Cara cocktail at At Random.

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