The old post office building on Broadway in Alexandria was renovated by my dad back in 1977. He owned Crown Realty (now Crown Realtors Coldwell Banker, a friendly competitor of yours truly) which used to be located a stone’s throw south where there is a green space at US Bank (the building was torn down long ago and if you have been in Alexandria for a long time you will recall it was a purple building). He took steps after the extensive renovation to get it registered in the National Register of Historic Places and in 1988 it was added. My dad wrote ““stylistically it is a fine example of the Renaissance Revival mode… The interior of the Post Office Building has retained a significant degree of original materials and design integrity.”
As part of a promotion for the Grand Opening of Crown’s new location he commissioned a local artist to paint some of the historic homes in Alexandria and then gave the owners prints. I have all the originals at my office and wondered if anyone recognizes the home featured in one of the paintings (see below). It is easy to drive by this home in Alexandria and not take a second look.
Located on 6th Ave across the street from the former Washington Elementary School (now a condo co-op) is what is the Hicks home. Sadly it has been neglected and is owned by a real estate firm in Edina as a rental. Prior to the current owner it was owned by the former Mayor of Alexandria, Virgil Batesole, who also rented it. Hicks refers to William Hicks who owned the land that became Alexandria. Hicks added a general store, built a flour mill, donated land that became Kinkead Cemetary, started the town’s first newspaper, provided land for three churches, and contributed to the addition of a saw mill near Lake Latoka. A busy guy. I don’t know why it is called the Hicks home as the county records and haven’t been able to find any details online other than Douglas County has the build date as 1900 but I am not sure it is accurate. I do know that it is one of the oldest wood-framed homes, if not the oldest, in Alexandria and used to be located at or near Trumm Drug and then was moved to its location at 6th and Jefferson. Likely it was built prior to 1900 and was where the Hicks family lived prior to it being moved.