Archive for Thursday, June 16, 2005

The building at 106 S. Main St.

June 16, 2005

It's amazing how a building can house such a wide variety of businesses for the people of Lansing over the years.

My first memory of the building at 106 S. Main St. was in the early 1930's when it was The Thomas Cafe. They served good family-style food, but I remember that it had a one-cent candy display case by the front door, and that is as far as I ever got. Mr. Thomas always played a trick on me - when I would hand him my penny and reached for the candy, I always ended up grabbing his finger, and he would really laugh. I could never figure out how he did that. The Thomas Cafe later moved across the street south of the drug store.

The building then became a pool hall owned by Levi Day, who retired from the state prison. I was not allowed to go in, but I can remember looking in the front window. It was so smoky in there you could only see the silhouettes of the guys inside playing pool and drinking beer.

In the early 1940's, Mr. Hall operated a machine and repair shop out of the building. He did blacksmithing, electrical and acetylene welding. On the front window under his name was hand-lettered, "We Mend Everything But a Broken Heart."

Sometime in the early 1950's, Leo Zweimiller opened a grocery store at that location. Leo asked me to paint a black and white belted pig that he placed over the meat counter. That grocery store changed hands to at least three new owners - W. J. Honeycutt, Leonard Inkman and Allen Ronnebaum - over the years.

There were times when the building was vacant, too. At another time it was a sports store owned by R. L. and Sharon Henley, then for a while a beauty shop, and now it is The Body Beautiful. Recently we had the opportunity to see the inside and were so impressed with the renovations they had made to this old building. Our son and daughter-in-law treated us to a massage - a first for me, and even though it didn't make me beautiful, it sure did feel good and was really relaxing.

If only that building could talk, it might say I missed a business here and there in those 75 years. These are just the ones I remember.


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