Working to preserve historic architecture in La Porte, Indiana, since 1994.
This is a list of historic structures in La Porte deemed to be threatened, yet highly worthy of saving. In establishing the list, it is hoped that their value to the community will be appreciated, and that positive outcomes for these structures can be achieved.
1. 506 CLAY STREET - This is where the Jiffy Pop Company started out. Fred Mennen is credited with developing the product in 1958. After five years of experimentation, Fred Mennen completed the first Jiffy Pop pop-in-pan container. He began marketing his product, featuring natural and butter flavors, in 1959, and a year later it was distributed to every major U.S. market. The property has been in various states of disrepair in recent years, and its “sleepy” location belies its importance to the history of La Porte.
2. 614 MONROE STREET - The Coddington Building is known by many old-time LaPorteans as a building where apparel was made and sold, in the days when La Porte was a significant garment-making center. Originally built by Edward Kanney in 1913 for his plumbing business, standing a full 5 stories tall, this imposing century-old Chicago-style edifice is the 2nd tallest historic building in downtown La Porte (after the Courthouse). This solidly built structure is ideally situated in an area of increasingly restored structures, and based upon its open floor plan, and large windows (currently shuttered), it would make an ideal adaptive reuse as desirable “urban loft” residences.
3. 4076 W. SMALL ROAD - The Orr Mansion was built in 1875 for William Orr (son of State Senator and Brigadier General Joseph Orr) and designed by Chicago architect Willoughby James Edbrooke. This spectacular Gothic-Italianate brick structure is arguably the most architecturally significant house in all of La Porte County. It is currently owned by an out-of-state owner, but is not occupied, and has fallen into disrepair.
4. 2852 W. STATE ROAD 2 - The La Porte County Home was built in 1886, and
has recently ceased operations after
130 years of service. It was one of the
last county homes in Indiana still
operating under its original purpose
of taking in the indigent and/or dispossessed, and providing them with self-respect, and a means to “earn their keep.” In recent years, community commitment to restoring the dairy barn on the site was an important “save.” On a beautiful estate that marks the western gateway into the city of La Porte, the building is ideally suited to a number of adaptive reuses, including private apartments, or possible institutional use.
5. 701 STATE STREET - The La Porte
Herald-Argus building was completed
in 1931, and designed by local architect Arthur C. Steigely. Larson-Danielson
was the builder. The structure has the privilege of being the only true Art Deco structure in the entirety of downtown
La Porte. The building, in need of rehab, is currently up for sale, as the owner of the paper is looking to consolidate operations with its other regional newspapers.