©2008 Historic Downtown Association-St. Charles
324 North Main
1892, John Atkinson
Atkinson's Dry Goods and Kuhlmann's
"When the first ladies pantaloon skirt was put on exhibition in the Kuhlmann show window it drew a crowd of spectators" on Main Street. The Rational Dress Society supported healthy exercise and the use of the bicycle as a 'vehicle of liberation' for women and protested "against the introduction of any fashion in dress that either deforms the figure, impedes the movement of the body or in any way tends to injure the health".
Built in 1892 by John Atkinson, this building was home to his Atkinson Dry Goods store. Kuhlmann's continued the dry goods business for many years when George Kuhlmann bought the building in 1907. Extensive remodeling, along with a small addition to the north, have altered this storefront. Excellent photographs remain to remind us of the original elaborately decorated arch and balustrade facade top embellishments - an example of Victorian exuberance in mercantile design.