(Previously known as: Western Supply Co., Gotzian Shoe Co., and J. H. Mahler Co. - 250 E. 5th St.)
In 1892, after four decades of growing business, the Gotzian Shoe Company hired St. Paul architect Cass Gilbert to design their new factory. The founder, Conrad Gotzian, had passed in 1887, but the company kept going, at the time employing more than 450 people. They left a fine legacy, as noted Twin Cities architectural historian Larry Millet calls this “Lowertown’s best building.” In 1895, the Gotzian family built the brick building to the south, also designed by Gilbert. First it was home to the company’s retail outlet, but later was rented out to the Western Supply Co. and the American Beauty Macaroni Co. Since the 1980s it’s been residential, and known as the American House. On the other side of the Parkside, facing 5th St., sits the J.H. Mahler Co. building, constructed in 1883. It represents the scale of building Lowertown was home to before being inundated by the large warehouses. The tall windows and cornice brackets tell of its Italianate style, and its cast-iron columns are some of the few surviving in Lowertown. Home to Mahler’s carriage and buggy dealership until 1889, it later became part of the Gotzian Shoe Co. complex, and is now part of the Parkside.