BY TOM BUSSELBERG
FARMINGTON – Many newer Farmington residents know the building on the northeast corner of Main and State Street as home to Francisco’s Mexican Restaurant.
But the building at 7 E. State Street soon will don a new exterior look. That’s thanks to $20,000 in federal Community Development Block Grant funds, which will be matched by money from the City of Farmington.
The intention is to remove the metal sheeting on the upper level, exposing the original brick, said David Petersen, city planner.
Depending on cost, project planners hope to remove the first floor exterior cover as well, revealing the original stonework.
It’s hoped the work can be completed this summer, he said. Community development block grants are awarded to improve economic development in a variety of ways.
In this case, the upper floor houses apartments for low and moderate-income people.
The building was originally red brick and housed the Farmington Community and Manufacturing Company, a history provided by Annette Tidwell of the Farmington Museum said.
It was built in 1891, and called “a fine modern two-story building which fills a long-felt need for a general store, where everything in the merchandising line might be had,” the book “The Rose City” said.
You could get outfitted with lumber, cement, coal, machinery, a wagon, shoes, groceries, and even medicine and office and plumbing equipment. Shoes purchased from the old Zions Cooperative Mercantile Institution were sold on the second floor, the history said.
The building was enlarged in 1910 to meet the needs of the growing business. A refrigerating plant was added to house the meat department and ice was available in the days pre-dating refrigerators or freezers.
The basement reportedly had natural cold water from a spring that supplied water for the Academy School and Shoreline Depot, the book “My Farmington” said.
In 1936, Milton Sessions bought the business and changed the name to Milt’s Market. it was later used as a pool hall for many years, and then beame a pizza restaurant. It’s now the restaurant, owned by Neal Sessions.