Centralia was the "Hub City", located midway between Seattle and Portland, and with rail routes moving east and west serving passenger and commercial activities all throughout southwest Washington. This street scene shows the landmark "Hub City" sign which used to hang over the intersection at Tower and Main Streets, keeping an eye on the original Halls Drugs on the corner. In 2003 the city developed a new logo embracing the traditional "Hub City" theme (see upper right corner). It captures the art deco influence of the 1930s with a modern flair.
Field, Lease & Robinson Buildings C. 1892
The buildings in the photograph are significant as the best example of Victorian commercial architecture constructed downtown. The projecting bay windows are typical of this period. Joseph Robinson, a prominent early Centralia businessman, had the northern-most building constructed at a cost of $10,000. The early Masonic Headquarters was in the 2nd-floor space, with the lower portion reserved for retail.
The building's most well-known occupant was Ella Field, a milliner, and hairdresser. Notable architectural features include an ornate tin cornice, tile entryway, and the use of patterned brick as detailing. The city streets now are a fine example of restored architecture finding new work in modern commerce.
Current photo: Robert Mosebar