Pop Quiz Answer: Orleans Municipal Building

Remember this one?

Orleans Municipal Building

Research on this building has not been successful so far (hence the delay), other than to turn up the following postcard, from the Cinema Treasures website, which dates the photograph to 1941.

Orleans Municipal Building

It looks remarkably similar, doesn’t it? This building also housed a movie auditorium theater with 500 seats. Today the building still serves as town offices and a theater/event space.

However, this still begs the question: is this a typical building style and where else does one exist? That part of the quiz I cannot answer. the mismatched brick still seems like a mystery to me. If you know or have another example, please share.

4 thoughts on “Pop Quiz Answer: Orleans Municipal Building

  1. Mark says:

    The front seems like a clear addition to me…likely dating to 1929. There may not be as much of a mystery here as one might think – different types of brick could/have been used for a variety of reasons. Its possible that the person doing the addition no longer had access to the exact type of brick they used originally, or that one type is simply cheaper than the first. I’ve seen this on many such buildings where the addition was years or decades later.

    Also wondered if the 1929 market crash had any part to play in such an addition ?? Did someone suddenly find themselves w/ less $ to build ?? Was the darker brick cheaper by any chance ? ( I personally have no clue about that, I’m simply asking…). Also wondered why the 3 large panels in the front seem bricked-in, rather than having windows in ’em. They seem like windows woulda been in there. Once again, would finances play a role here ??

    • Kaitlin says:

      Originally I thought the front was an addition, too, but then it would have been constructed so soon after the building itself. Maybe finances played a role, not sure. I’m hoping to find the answer.

  2. Frank says:

    Perhaps interior staircases leading from the 2nd floor to 3rd floor hug the facade wall; hence, a lack of openings on the facade.

    Regarding the brick…the street I live on in Columbus has homes with the same masonry treatment: the common homogenous orange variety (cheaper) on the sides and back, and facade brick composed of multiple darker and lighter hues of orange & red (more expensive). That kind of treatment does seem more out of place on a larger public building, though.

    • Kaitlin says:

      Interesting about Columbus. And yes, the building continues to strike me as odd. I read somewhere that maybe the front had space for movie posters. Not sure. Your idea about the stairs is good. Next time I’m that way, I’ll have to go inside.

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