The building, by local architect R. Garey Dickson, still stands, and Washington's City Hall is now located across the street.
The YWCA is a three-story Elizabethan Revival structure of symmetric stone masonry. Multi-colored brick is accented with cut stone quoins and carved stone bandings. There are grouped lancet windows, high gables, pinnacles, and embattlements. Beneath a pointed archway and a stone coat of arms are entrance doors made of oak.
The edifice was dedicated on Sunday, October 27, 1929. An entire week of festivities followed, despite the crash of the stock market on October 29.
The building was remodeled in the 1970s and rededicated on Wednesday, March 30, 1977. I was at the ceremony to operate Cable TV3s single black-and-white camera. (An earlier version of this article mistakenly placed this telecast two years later, at the buildings golden anniversary.)
The Y purchased a copy of our tape to keep in their archives, so that the celebrations could be viewed again at the 100th anniversary. Would ¾ videocassette players be readily available to play the tape in the far-off year of 2027? I had my doubts, but that wasnt really my concern.
Within three years, I had moved away from Washington. The YWCA continued its activities, with numerous outside organizations using the facility for social and administrative purposes. But the building was becoming more costly to maintain. The slate roof was leaking. Also, the Y's membership base was shrinking. The doors closed in 2002.
The structure sat empty for a decade. Everybody in Washington wished that someone would do something with that building, says Kathleen Kleinmann. Its been boarded up, looking like a grand monstrosity. One plan was to raze it and put up a parking lot.
At one point I had a shot framed as shown below in red. In the background, below the balcony on the far side, my shot included the double doors along the side of the hall.
I continued to pan, and he continued to walk. When I showed the third doorway and he appeared in it, I was quite proud of myself. I doubt whether anyone noticed.
Anyway, now its a new century. Good luck to TRIPIL on their project!