By Jennie Cole
While meandering through Louisville, I often find myself musing on the history of its buildings and intersections, given my near-daily interactions with Louisville's photographic past here at The Filson. Likewise, when I see images of former Louisville street scenes hanging as decor in restaurants, businesses, etc., I always pause and attempt to pick out the location - this small pleasure is something I would love to be able to pass on to my son.
When perusing a Louisville business directory compiled by the Railway Publishing Company in 1903, Louisville, Kentucky, The Falls City, The Industrial Center of the Southwest, I came across an image of downtown Louisville and was struck by the complete overhaul that had occurred between then and now.
The intersection today features the Seelbach Hotel on the southwest corner, built in 1905; the Meidinger Tower on the northwest, completed in 1982; the Starks Building on the northeast, completed in July 1913; and the Hilliard Lyons Center (formerly Stewart Dry Goods), completed in 1907 and renovated in 1937, on the southeast corner.
I know that the building on the northeast corner of the 1903 image is the First Christian Church, and I believe the department store Selman's may have been on the northwest corner, but what were the other buildings?