154 North Broadway is positioned near the Victorian Square Mall and across the street from the Lexington Opera House. The building, originally designed to be used as a church, was constructed in 1867 by American architect Cincinnatus Shryock. Shryock, who is known for his works in Lexington, is the sibling of the well-known American architect Gideon Shryock. Gideon Shyrock designed what many consider the best Greek Revival architecture west of the Mississippi, as well as the construction of buildings on Transylvania’s campus. Cincinnatus Shryock received an education at Transylvania University, and was drawn to the construction of private residences and church buildings. A few of his notable church building designs include the First Presbyterian Church and the old First Baptist Church.
The majority of the building’s historical use is highlighted by the occupation of religious groups within Lexington. However, there are a few notable changes in its occupancy. The first known occupant in 1901, Everybody’s Church Inc., sold the building to Centenary Methodist Church in 1927-1935, who owned the building again briefly in 1942.
After the first known shift in occupancy, the building was used by Sharpe G. Clinton Furniture in 1937, and then shifted again to Robertson Arthur D. Wholesale Confectioner from 1939-1941. From the years 1945-1947 the building was occupied by Hobart Sales & Service Store Fixtures. The building’s use changed to a longer term of occupancy held by the National Cash Register Company from the years of 1948 through 1958, which was followed by a year of vacancy in 1959, and then again in the years of 1966, and 1970- ‘71. The building and adjacent parking lot were used briefly as a used car lot by Broadway Used Cars Inc. in the following years of the early 1970’s followed by a brief period of private parking in the year 1974.
The building was sold to Broadway Christian Church in mid 2003 and underwent a 2,000% valuation increase by 2013 when it was purchased by Gogel Historic Properties LLC, the buildings current owner and occupant, Heritage Antiques.
To the knowledge of the owner of Heritage Antiques, the building was only redesigned once, in 1916, when the addition of the rear including a first and second floor, was constructed. The building’s exterior shell has remained entirely the same from its recollected construction date, as well as most of the interior plan. The rear of the building is connected to the heart of the church via a walkway located on the right side of the interior and shares the building’s exterior facades. The downstairs level of the rear is currently used as a Deli Restaurant which is openly connected to the antique store part of the interior. The upstairs is used as more space for antiques by the current owner.
The Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation were followed in the property’s adaptive reuse and in the addition of the rear section by neglecting to tear down or replace any original finishes of the building with new materials, therefore allowing the character-defining elements of the building to remain.
Design decisions made by Gogel Historic Properties LLC allowed the exterior to remain as it was when constructed, with the addition of a few antique statues, as well as a sign indicating the building’s newly revamped purpose. Considerable interior changes included the removal of the church pews to allow room for the distribution of vast antique items on display at Heritage Antiques, the addition of proper lighting, and the original floor plan. Character defining elements of the interior that remain include windows, stained-glass windows, a full organ instrument in working order, two symmetrical viewing platforms, the original altar stage, hardwood floors/steps, and doors.