Rest of the article, see here.If a dramatic building could ever transmute into limestone, marble, bronze, glass, wood and steel the essence of the man who inspired it, Decatur industrial baron Augustus Eugene Staley's former corporate headquarters is the place.
Completed for him 88 years ago in April 1930, the building at 2200 E. Eldorado St. was more than a mere head office for the founder of the former A.E. Staley Manufacturing Company. Staley wanted a capitalistic ode to joy sung in soaring architecture that would rise to a height of 217 feet and stretch to 263 wide and 103 feet deep.
Faced in gleaming white limestone and built in the avant garde style of the time — Art Deco — everything about this $1.7 million architectural confection was in-your-face. Staley, who started selling corn starch more than 30 years earlier from the back of a wagon and fought endless battles against ruthless competitors to carve out a corn and soybean processing business empire, had finally arrived at the top of the heap. And he wanted the world to know it, building a citadel for his company that would set him back $24,955,400 in today’s inflated prices, according to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.
These four frames of the same angle show some of the colors of the lights on the Tate & Lyle building. The lights, first installed on what was then the headquarters of the A.E. Staley Mfg. Co. in 1930, have been restored. Photographer Jim Bowling, Herald & Review.
The article is about a tour that served as "a fundraiser for the Staley Museum, which preserves the founder’s memory and his family’s history in the grand Decatur Arts & Crafts style home he lived in.
The Staley building is now owned by London-based Tate & Lyle, and opening it up for its first public tour is a gift from the company to the public and the museum, which opened two years ago. Last year, the company delighted Decatur residents when it restored the colored floodlights on the building, allowing for mesmerizing displays of vivid color in the Decatur skyline.
So, a question I have: Does the Staley Museum sell miniature collectible replicas of the Staley Building for all of us former Decaturites who want to obtain a souvenir of our youthful hometown's skyscraper?