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LOWELL THEN AND NOW
 
     After the fire at Barristers' Hall, the building's owner, a clothing merchant named Joseph A. Chalifoux, erected the site's third structure - the Colonial Building.  Chalifoux was a clothing merchant who earned $5 a week before opening his own Merrimack Street store.  Although Chalifoux constructed this five-story corner structure as a department store, he did not move his own business to this location.  Instead, he leased it to a five-and-ten cent store.  His son moved the business to this site three years after Chalifoux's death.

     Over the years, the facade of the Colonial Building underwent at least two remodelings, during which the first floor entrance was moved from the comer to the Merrimack Street facade and aluminum storefronts were added.  In a 1991 rehabilitation, the entrance was returned to the corner and the storefronts were replaced with more historically compatible wooden ones.

FRAME 4, 
Photographs A & B 
BON MARCHE BUILDING 143-153 Merrimack Street 
The Merrimack Street facade of this building was constructed in three parts.  The central section was built in 1887 by Frederick and Charles Mitchell to house the Bon Marche Dry Goods Company.  Prior to the incorporation of the store, the brothers had both operated Merrimack Street businesses - Frederick, a dry goods store and Charles, a shoe store.  The left section of the building was added to the Bon Marche store in 1927.

     The right section of the building was constructed around 1874.  It housed a confectionery and a restaurant before it became the Railroad National Bank in 1896.  While the bank added a fifth floor and remodeled the facade, the upper stories of the bank portion remained different from the rest of the structure.

     When the Jordan Marsh department store moved to the building in 1976, the facades and window glass of all three sections were painted white and a sidewalk canopy was built along the entire Merrimack Street side of the building.  In 1986, both the paint and the canopy were removed, revealing the earlier architecture beneath.

FRAME 4, 
Photographs C & D THOMPSON BUILDING 133 -137 Merrimack Street 
This two-story brick structure was constructed as a commercial building sometime between 1851 and 1860.  City directories reveal that it housed a variety of entrepreneurs, including a house painter and paper hanger, a confectioner, a milliner, a book seller, and a photographer.

     There were originally five windows on the second floor of this building.  When the building underwent modernization, these window openings were altered and later bricked in.  Other changes included the painting of the red brick facade white, and the installation of plate glass and aluminum storefronts.

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