(54) 216 – 220 Main Street

216-220 Main"Frame homes were razed when the Ben Ack Building was erected in the 1920s. All of Downtown Hobart was once owned by Chief Ben Ack of the Potawatomi Indians. This area was one of the floats awarded him when the U.S. Government purchased Northwest Indiana from the Potawatomi in the 1832 Treaty of Tippecanoe. Most of his land was bought by George Earle. The second story of the Ben Ack building is apartments, three stores make up the first floor. These stores have been occupied by various businesses. NIPSCO's first business office used one, Dick Wheaton sold TVs before he moved to Third Street. An auto agency, a chicken franchise, a newspaper store, Mundell's Flower Shop (1940-1947) (218 Main St.), a realty office and a children's wear shop were briefly here. Now Henri's Dress Shop (216 Main St.) has two rooms, and Nawrocki's Hobart Liquor Store the third (220 Main St.)."

Images (links open in a new window):
♦ In this 1913 photo, you can see a frame building just north of the Hobart House that may be one of the "frame homes" razed to make room for the Ben Ack building.
♦ In July 1947, the Ben Ack building housed Mundell's Flower Shop and the Jack & Jill Juvenile Shoppe.
♦ This 1957 street scene catches an oblique view of the Ben Ack building (with the Coca-Cola sign).
♦ Apparently the chicken franchise alluded to above was Chicken Delight.
♦ Henri's, at 216 Main, in 1964 and 1970; inside Henri's in 1971.
♦ By 1984 Henri's was out and the Brickie Photo Center was in at 216 Main.

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