Lots 26 & 28, Augustine & Lebold’s 2nd Addition
The property occupied by the building addressed 314 N. Buckeye Avenue was part of the Miller & Thomas Lumber Yard between 1883 and June 1887, when the firm moved to the northeast corner of Cedar and A (Texas) Streets. Miller & Thomas had a narrow lumber shed running along the west property line. The lumber sheds were removed and the property did not have any structures until 1907. During this time the property was likely used by the Jeffcoat Livery Stable and/or Star Livery Stable.
In March 1907, Amasa Jeffcoat petitioned the City Council for permission to build a horse boarding barn at 314 N. Buckeye Avenue. Permission was granted. However, neighboring livery stable owner, H. A. Anderson, brought an injunction suit to the Council to halt the building project contending that the block walls were one inch less in thickness than required by ordinance. The ordinance in questions did not cover cement block buildings. On May 17th, the City Council adopted an ordinance addressing cement structures and allowed construction of the building to continue. This building is one of the few solid cement block buildings in Abilene. The new stable was touted as the most modern in the city with electric lighting throughout, insulated wire, and box stalls for twenty horses.
The boarding stable was sold to veterinarian Dr. Ralph E. Townsend in October 1910. Dr. Townsend continued the business at the same stand and added his veterinary office at the space. The boarding stable turned into an animal hospital with recovering animals being under consistent observation of the veterinarian. Dr. Townsend elected to build a new animal hospital in the spring of 1920 and began construction of the structures at 405 N. Buckeye Avenue.
From 1923 to 1947 the building was used as a produce and poultry station and in 1948 the Grapette Bottling Company operated a bottling facility in the building. However, three years later the 1951 flood ceased the bottling operation and the building became unoccupied for three years. In 1954, Garrett’s Tire Service opened and would do business at this location until 1976.
The original structure did not extend west to the alley, thereby allowing for an outdoor yard for animals. The original structure has a loft hay shoot door on the west end for 2nd floor loading. This feature is now inside of the structure since the additional of a metal shed on the alley. In recent years, several improvements have been made to the property, including a wide finished staircase and finished studio space on the second floor. The 2nd floor bay window was recently installed in an opening that was originally a lot hay door.
The building has housed the following businesses:
- Jeffcoat & Son Livery Stable (1907-1910),
- Ralph E. Townsend (1910-1920),
- Abilene Hardwood Lumber Company (1923),
- Harrison A. Meier Produce Station (1923-1940),
- Seymour Produce Station (1941-1947),
- Grapette Bottling Company (1948-1951),
- Garrett’s Tire Service (1954-1976),
- Bauman Carpet (1976-2001), and
- SK Designs (2001-Present)