Transoms and Capitals

CapitalsSo many times in our busy day to day hurry up and keep up lives, we find that we become blind to some of our most beautiful surroundings. Since the StreetScape and Frank Lloyd Wright Hotel projects were completed, I find more and more likely tourists walking the downtown area taking photos. I’m more out of the office than in and even during the times I’m there, I see sightseers taking photos of the Kirk Apartment Building with all its wrought iron balconies and copper cladding. They also seem to like to have their photos taken standing in the little nook of my exterior foyer next to the florentine glass panels. They always seem to be enjoying themselves with the sights. It would be great if every business owner in Downtown Mason City would make improvements on their exteriors to not only encourage customers to shop, but also give passer-byes something to admire and tell friends about after returning home. My hat goes off to Moorman’s Clothiers for the great job they’ve done with the exterior of their building as well as Dr. Lala with his work in progress on his buildings. We really do need to keep the momentum going on growing the downtown into a most delightful place to be no matter if you’re a weekend visitor or a long time resident. We should never rest on our present laurels of accomplishments, but rather work towards making our Historic District even better. In more ways than one, I’m happy that my storefront was not removed over the years as I still have nearly all of the original components which I hope to have restored this year. I do indeed enjoy my transom windows as well as the massive oak entry door. I smile to myself every once in a while when someone who is not used to a thumb latch trying to open the front door to my office. How funny! I do have my original transoms but whomever built my building back in 1882 wasn’t as wealthy as some of the other business owners in our downtown. So I guess what is lacking in grandeur is made up with the oodles of hardwoods in my building. I took a photo several days ago of a “to die for” capital above a door in our downtown. Whomever walked thru that door on a daily basis must have considered themselves quite special. What a way to start and end a day! I hope you all begin paying a bit more attention to transoms and capitals. Some of them are real keepers.

Joe Chodur

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