The Gerlach:

Historically, this location served for many years as the center for North Mankato’s municipal services. In December of 1898 local civic leaders met to elect its first village officers. One of their first municipal actions as a governing body was to protect the village by establishing a fireman’s hall.

A larger, one-story wood-frame fire hall was soon constructed at this southeast corner of Belgrade Avenue and Center Street. The barn-like structure with an elevated false front, housed the horse drawn wagons and fire equipment. A back-meeting room provided a gathering place for volunteer firefighters, the village council, and court.

By 1910 the property also supported a simple, one-story wood-frame building that was home to the community’s public library and some city hall services.

In 1926 the handsome brick civic building was constructed with deep pride to provide space for the city offices, library, police department, a fire station, and an all-purpose civic auditorium in one structure. The City Hall remained in service there until the late 1960’s when a new municipal building was constructed at 1001 Belgrade Avenue.

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