The YMCA Building at 345-347 High Street was built in 1884. It was made by Louis Rigali who had a building next to it too. By 1889 the YMCA had moved here. They left here in 1893 when they got their own block. Then the YWCA was here from 1893 to 1910. The facade of the 345 block has been painted at one time and hence the pale look.
The next YMCA Building was at the corner of Appleton and High two building away – 357 High Street. William Morgan invented the game in the winter of 1895. That building is no longer there but there is a wonderful image of its inside. There were so few indoor sports that he saw the need for such a game. Basketball was invented four years earlier in Springfield.
POSTCARD ONE – TWO – THREE – FOUR
On December 18 1943 the building burned to the ground and in 1950 was on Beech Street. Read their history on their web SITE.
In 1914 and 1915 on the ground floor there was the People’s Bank.
and also the Home National Bank with James Newton as its president.
Sanborn 1884 map shows the area nearly empty
Sanborn 1889 map shows the YMCA on all three floors of the Rigali old building
Sanborn 1895 map shows the YMCA as new and the YWCA now in place
on the 1915 Sanborn map the YMCA is at the corner showing the gymnasium on the 4th floor
Sanborn 1949 map shows the three buildings with the two Rigali ones as normal but the YMCA one changed into a 2 story wooden one