As its name implies, The Old Brick Store is a brick building that was originally built to serve as a commercial store during the time of Essex’s economic boom. This utilitarian Greek Revival store was built in c. 1840, and has stood on Essex’s Main Street for 172 years.
With the original three-bay storefront facade, this building is a tribute to Essex’s mid-nineteenth-century commercial activity. (“Essex: An Architectural Guide.” 12) Its design is simple, but the building has a few unique architectural features.
“It is notable for its corbeled (stepped out) brick cornice, rectangular stone lintels above the windows, and paneled door surround. The storefront is outlined by pilasters (engaged flat columns) with molded Doric caps.” (“Essex: An Architectural Guide.” 12)
A Bit of Old Brick Store History
This store has gone through several name changes including being called the Essex Market (c. 1905) and Huston’s (c. 1980) (Images of America: Essex on Lake Champlain. 60-61). Perhaps you may know when exactly the store first used those names, or any other titles that the store has had throughout the years? Share your story about the Old Brick Store!
It was once common for businesses to build shed roofs as sidewalk overhangs to protect patrons from the beating sun and rain. While operating as the Essex Market, the Old Brick Store provided such a shelter for customer accommodation Images of America: Essex on Lake Champlain. 60). The store was also well-known for its vegetables during its time as the Essex Market (Images of America: Essex on Lake Champlain.60).
The old Essex Post Office used to be located directly next to this store on the left before it was moved to its current location in the Van Ornam Building (Images of America: Essex on Lake Champlain. 60).
Additional Resources for Old Brick Store
This map (with satellite image overlay) will help you locate the Old Brick Store and see how its location relates to other historic buildings in the historic district.
View Flaneur’s Guide to Essex, New York in a larger map
References for the Old Brick Store
“Essex: An Architectural Guide.” Essex Community Heritage Organization, 1986.
“Essex Village Historic District.” Living Places. Ed. Julia Gombach. The Gombach Group, 2010. Web. 28 Nov. 2012. <http://www.livingplaces.com/NY/Essex_County/Essex_Town/Essex_Village_Historic_District.html>.
Hislop, David C., Jr. Essex on Lake Champlain. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Pub., 2009. Print. Images of America.
“Historic Essex.” Historic Essex. Essex Community Heritage Organization. Web. 28 Nov. 2012. <http://www.essexny.org/>.
McNulty, George F., and Margaret Scheinin. Essex; the Architectural Heritage. Burlington, VT: Queen City Printers, 1971. Print.
Smith, H. P. History of Essex County: With Illustrations and Biographical Sketches of Some of Its Prominent Men and Pioneers. Syracuse, N. Y.: D. Mason &, 1885. Print.