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May 24, 2014

The Terminal Arcade through the years

TERRE HAUTE — On the National Register of Historic Places, this week’s Treasure is another one of Terre Haute’s landmark buildings, the Terminal Arcade. Located at 822 Wabash Ave., most of us recognize it by the two large, ornate “fruit bowls” on top of its arched entrances.

Designed by Daniel H. Burnham of Chicago, the Arcade originally served as the Terre Haute, Indianapolis and Eastern Traction Company interurban station. It opened its doors in 1911.

The Beaux-Arts style building is constructed of terra cotta and brick with two identical limestone, granite-based facades on its north and south sides. The facades were the work of Fred Edler and J. W. Quayle. The Beaux-Arts (beautiful arts) Style is characterized by a flat roof, arched windows, pedimented entrances, symmetry and sculptural details.

The central entry is flanked by fluted columns, which appear to support a barrel-vaulted arch. Above each storefront window is a panel with a heavy, sagging garland around an oval cartouche, symmetrically strung between two lion heads carved in high relief. A similar garland and cartouche motif appears over the entrance archway. Resting on the cornice is a limestone tablet inscribed with “TERMINAL ARCADE.” Atop the tablet is a single carved basket of fruit overflowing with garlands, spilling out of the basket and down the façade.

With the age of the automobile the Arcade closed on Jan. 11, 1940, when the interurban tracks were shut down. From Dec. 1, 1949 to 1972, it was the location of the Terre Haute bus station. The building was placed on the National Register of Historic Places on June 30, 1983. Privately owned since 1995, it is now the Terminal Sports & Spirits Bar.

Historical Treasure

• The Vigo County Historical Society’s museum is at 1411 S. Sixth St. Hours are 1 to 4 p.m. Tuesday through


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    March 12, 2010