Pomeroy Washington Downtown National Historic District
Historic District Downtown Building Inventory
Current (2021) address: 804 Main Street
1953 address: Brown's Drug Store, 903 Main street, Phone 135
Richardson Funeral Home, 907 Main street, Phone 57-J
Third storefront (CC Richmond Hardware? 915 Main street, Phone 100)
(Non-Historic, Non-Contributing Building)
After the 1900 fire, C.H. Seeley constructed the Seeley Block to house a hardware store, drug store, and furniture businesses. The building housed successful businesses until December 8, 1959 when a fire destroyed the Seeley Block. In December, 1961, the new U.S. Post Office was completed on the site. The post office moved from its previous location across Main Street in the Chard Building. In the early 1980s, the post office moved to its present location at the comer of Eleventh and Main streets. As of this writing (2020), the subject building is used as a service center for the USDA.
Description and much of the Cultural Data based on
research by Donovan & Associates
The Seeley Block buildings, taken relatively soon after construction. (Photo courtesy of Alverna "Al" Godinez.)
The business on our left is "Williamson & Vassar Furniture" and the business on the right is J.R. Stevenson Hardware. In 1905, Stevenson moved across the street to his newly constructed building.
This postcard is from late 1913.
J. G. Morris Harness, Vehicles, and Implements occupied either the center of the three storefronts that made up the Seeley Block (later the Richardson Funeral Home) or the easternmost front (Later the ___________)
Used as a filler in a September, 1913, issue of the East Washingtonian:
J. G. Morris has just received a shipment of imported hand painted Chinaware. He carries the largest stock of these goods in the city. -- adv.
J. G. (Jesse Garfield) Morris was born to Nathaniel Morris and Catherine Elizabeth Tresidder on March 3, 1881. The 1910 US Census showed him living with his parents in East Pomeroy, Garfield Co. and occupation, retail merchant of implements. He married Etta May Alexander. The only known child born to them was Jeslyn Jane Morris. J.G. dies on September 29, 1953, in Spokane. (findagrave.com)
East Washingtonian publisher Medved calls for Strain, Brown, and Richardson to be named Pomeroy's "Men of the Year"
The three Pomeroy firms, Strain's Furniture & Hardware, Brown's Drug Store and Richardson Funeral Home, whose business houses and stock of merchandise were destroyed by fire, entailing a personal loss of $132,000, are to be congratulated in that they are all back in business again even if on a makeshift basis for the present time.
Their faith in the community and Pomeroy in particular was not of the faltering type, for no sooner had the dawn of Wednesday emerged they were already making plans and seeking new locations to re-engage in business on Pomeroy's Main street in the quickest time possible.
Wednesday morning, F. A. Brown, the druggist, whom many believed would retire, and rightfully so for reasons of health, purchased the Sommerville building and before sunset that night had a crew of men employed to remodel the building to his liking, and had merchandise on the shelves for sale.
On the same day Bill Strain, for Strain's Furniture & Hardware, made arrangements to move into the building vacated on Tuesday by Kuykendall's Drug Store. This firm, too, has new merchandise on its shelves that is being added to daily.
Bert Richardson, of the Richardson Funeral Home, was in Spokane this week on business matters that has to do with the re-establishment of his business on a permanent basis.
The decisions of these three business men has been an inspiration to all of the business men on Pomeroy's "main drag" and their actions is something the Chamber of Commerce can brag about for years to come.
Gentlemen, orchids to you, we'll name you the "Men of the Year."—G. M. [George Medved]
Another front page article in the December 17, 1959, EW related the fall of a wall:
A wind estimated at between 25 and 30 miles an hour, Friday afternoon blew over the west brick wall of the Allen-McCleary building still left standing after Pomeroy's costly fire last Tuesday night.
A brisk wind had the wall weaving backward and forward for two hours before a gust toppled over 100 feet of the 120-foot wall eastward into the basement of the gutted building at 4:30 p. m.
The wall was 120 feet long and 21 feet in height and it is estimated contained 10,000, more or less, bricks.
As the brick fell onto the ground they landed in about the same relative position as they had been laid into the wall 59 years ago.
From the December 17, 1959, EW, we see how fast these three businessmen moved::
F. A. Brown paid $9,000 for his new drug store building which he bought from Fred A. Bennett on Friday, dec. 11. The building is the old location of Christensen-Rauch Co.
Pomeroy Junior Chamber of Commerce members voted at their meeting Tuesday night to begin work of cleaning out the hole at 8th and Main Saturday, Nov. 26.
Arrangements have been made with Seeley Allen and Vyvien McCleary, owners of the lot, to clean out the place and fill it with dirt. The Jaycees will in turn be paid for their efforts.
As soon as the hole is filled it will be used as a free city parking lot until sold.
Bricks from the walls will be sold by the Jaycees and the scrap iron in the hole has been donated to the band booster's club.
East Washingtonian November 17, 1960, page 1
The July 29, 1971, "Down Memory Lane" reprinted this news from 1961:
Wm. Spoker & Sons, general contractors from Spokane plan to begin construction on the new Pomeroy postoffice building as early as next week.
An article in a February, 1971, issue of the East Washingtonian
The appointment of William R. Young as postmaster at Pomeroy, was announced today by Fred Huleen, Seattle director of the Northwest states postal region.
Young has served as a clerk at the Pomeroy Post-office since December 1963. He was mayor of Pomeroy from 1962 to 1967, and had been a state president of the Junior Chamber of Comfmerce fpr 3 years. He served in the U. S. Navy from June 1944 to May 1946.
Young is married and has 3 children. Mrs. Don Garrett, Pomeroy, Doug, at home, and Greg, Harrington, Wash.
The appointment, effective February 20, was made on the recommendation of a Regional Management Selection Board established to review the qualifications of applicants as the major step in filling postmaster vacancies.
It is a new procedure of the U. S. Postal Service following authorization provided in the Postal Reorganization Act of August, 1970, to make postmaster appointments without Congressional participation,
"The new merit selection system is designed to achieve the best possible standards of post-office management as a means of providing reliable and efficient postal service to the public.' Huleen said.
Young, 44, a native of Pomeroy, replaces Ronald Chard retired in October 1969.
An article in the June 14, 1979, E-W titled "Holiday Bowl remains open" referred to the possibility of the post office relocating to the Holiday Lanes site when the lease at this location ended.
The East Washingtonian covered "Smilin' John" Capwell's retirement in August, 1980.
Wandering Pomeroy's Main Street
Area Traffic Cameras
Delaney (20+ miles W on Highway 12)
SE Washington Traffic Alerts