Second Sole Building

Imagine a small-town agricultural village transforming into an economically independent city, such was Medina in the 1900s. So how did Medina become the city it is today? By 1890, Medina County communities were well served by a network of 5 steam railroad companies linking the county to regional and national markets. This helped Medina get more involved in the progress of our country by being able to export our products and help the city grow. The A.I. Root Candle Company was surpassing all previous sales records in manufactured goods, demonstrating how Medina was flourishing. At the time, horses were still the main type of transportation so there was no fast way to get from Medina to the big cities. Because jobs were in the cities, citizens needed to live close to the cities until the invention of the automobile allowed them spread out to suburban communities such as Medina. As the population of this small farm country grew the city spread out and what was once just a square of traffic became a full grown town. It was the invention of the car that made this town and many other towns like it possible. Medina prospered through World Wars I and II and has been a historical demonstration of everything that has happened in our country. Medina went through prohibition, the depression, and suburbanization and after all of this we got the town we now call home.

The building that is now Second Sole was built in 1880 and has seen and been through many of the changes in America. It is a living relic from Medina’s past and tells a story.The building has changed ownerships and been re-designed but it still shows the past of America. The building on 122 Public Square is currently a store for athletic equipment, but it once housed two law firms Along with the other buildings on the square this building, once known as the Snedden Building, should remind Americans of our proud past. Even the fire in the building in 2011 did not harm the outside. The inside was burnt and caused a change in ownership but that is not the historic part of the building. The inside of the building has changed many times but the outside shows the proud history of Medina and is an example of everything American towns have gone through to become what they are today.

Images

Old picture with second sole in the middle

Old picture with second sole in the middle

Although the American House Hotel is now gone the buildings next to it still stand. The building on the right was The Savings Deposit Bank, which is now the restaurant PJ Marley's. The building to the left of the bank, now Second Sole, has been numerous law offices and was once called Twinkle Cleaners. Twinkle Cleaners was a shop close to home for local people to get their clothes cleaned. They could dry clean clothes, which was important if a person wanted to look their best. There were not many places in Medina where clothes could get professionally cleaned. After the building was sold, 122 Public Square held a few different law offices, the most recent belonging to Larry Brandel. While the building's name has changed, it will forever be a living piece of Medina's history. Courtesy of the Medina Archives Museum. View File Details Page

1890s Horseback Riders in Front of the Snedden Buliding

1890s Horseback Riders in Front of the Snedden Buliding

Prior to the Industrial Revolution, automobiles were made expensively and cost a lot of money. Therefore, few people could afford to purchase an automobile and moved around by riding horses to where they needed to go. In the 1890s, the population of Medina was small. The majority of jobs were in the big cities and without cars, transportation to and from the cities was difficult. Therefore, few people lived in Medina until the automobile was made cheaper by Henry Ford. The building that currently houses Second Sole is in the background of the picture and it is unknown what it was at the time. Courtesy of the Letterly Family Archives. View File Details Page

American hotel with second sole on right

American hotel with second sole on right

In the 1900s, the building that currently houses the Second Sole company was joined to the American House Hotel. Both the hotel and 122 Public Square (where Second Sole is now) served as a hub of village functions and events. In the year of 1954, the American House hotel was demolished. Prior to the demolition of the American House hotel, guests could order a fine meal and enjoy the heart or originality of the Medina Square. After the hotel was demolished, it was turned into a parking lot. Recently, the parking lot was turned into the public restrooms that currently reside next to the Second Sole building. Courtesy of The Medina Archives Museum. View File Details Page

Second Sole fire

Second Sole fire

In 2011, a fire occurred at 122 Public Square, At the time, the building was the law office of Larry Brandel. Nothing besides the law office was burned, but the Key Bank was closed the next day due to the smell of smoke. A candle and a computer were placed in the area where the fire is said to have started. Because the building dates back to the early 1900s, the fire destroyed most of what was inside and it forced Mr. Brandel to sell the building. Second Sole then took up his offer and moved their business from the other side of town to the square. Despite the internal destruction of the building, the outside remains untarnished. Courtesy of the Medin County Gazette View File Details Page

New Second Sole Building

New Second Sole Building

122 Public Square currently houses the running store named Second Sole. The store has been in place since the year of 2011 when the former owner, Larry Brandel, sold his law office to Steve Hixson, the franchise owner of Second Sole. Mr. Brandel was forced to sell his law office due to a fire in the building. While the exterior of the building remained unscathed, the interior was destroyed. The building has been in place since the early 1900's when it was part of the American House Hotel and the bricks that made up the building when it was part of the hotel are still there today. Courtesy of Jacob Mardovin View File Details Page

Sliver of second sole on right

Sliver of second sole on right

The destruction of the American House Hotel was a great loss to this city. Many historic building have been torn down in the past 50 years, most became parking lots. However the building next to the hotel has been spared and will not be leaving anytime soon. On the far right side of the picture next to the hotel 122 Public Square is visible.This building along with most of the square has survived the past 50 years during which 40 buildings have been torn down. The only thing we have today to remember the demolished buildings are pictures. However at 122 public square and all over the square we have an example of American history right in our own town. Courtesy of The Medina Archives Museum. View File Details Page

Audio

Larry Brandel Tells of The Fire from his Point of View

In 2011, a fire ensued in 122 Public Square. According to Larry Brandel, the owner at the time, his secretary often lit candles in the building and they most likely caused the fire. Mr. Brandel was contacted after he left the building and was informed that his building was on fire and there were six fire trucks in front of the building. Mr. Brandel states that the internal damage to the building was very bad and the building was completely gutted. He also reported smoke pouring out of one of the windows on the second floor. Thankfully, no one was injured in the fire. Courtesy of Mr. Lawrence Brandel View File Details Page

Larry Brandel Tells Some of the History of the Building

Around the 1970s, Mr. Larry Brandel bought 122 Public Square (which currently houses Second Sole) from a woman with the last name of Snedden. The building had belonged to her husband and was called the Snedden Building, but the building was left to her when her husband died. When Mr. Brandel bought the building, he changed the name to ‘Laurence S. Brandel, Attorney at Law.’ After using the building as his law office until a fire forced him to sell it, he sold it to Jim Gowe, the current owner of the building. Mr. Brandel remodeled much of the building when he owned it and Mr. Gowe repaired the building after the catastrophic fire. Courtesy of Mr. Lawrence Brandel View File Details Page

Cite this Page:

Matt Stump, Timothy Maynard, Jacob Mardovin, “Second Sole Building,” Discover Medina, accessed July 23, 2017, http://discovermedina.org/items/show/259.

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