Old Post Office Building
Gilbert-Leonard Town; Block 3, Lot 7
The City Club, a magnificent brick and masonry structure with an Italian Renaissance façade, was completed in 1894 on property purchased by the United States government for $14,500 from Dr. Jean Bertrand Duchein for use as a post office and federal courthouse. After years of use for those purposes, and several years of serving as city-parish offices, the building was remodeled to become the City Club of Baton Rouge. Two years prior to the Club's opening in 1957, Baton Rouge was the only major Louisiana city without a men's club. New Orleans had the Boston Club, Lake Charles had the Pioneer Club, Lafayette had the Petroleum Club, and Monroe had the Lotus Club. Before adopting its official name, others like The Magnolia Club and The Capital City Club were considered. The original d & eacute; cor was designed by nationally respected interior decorator, William Parker McFadden, who was recommended by an editor of House Beautiful Magazine. McFadden was also responsible for creating the Club's symbol, crossed batons centered with a fleur-de-lis. It is seen in many places throughout the building as well as on Club correspondence. In 1994, under the tenure of Francis X. Guglielmo, president, the City Club dining and service areas were refurbished by local Baton Rouge interior designers, Becki Abercrombie and Helaine Moyse. Although the fine tradition of good food and fellowship has remained constant over the years, there have been changes at the City Club. Because it was formed as men's club, for many years, ladies were always considered guests. Today, resident membership includes both male and female business persons. As always, many of our city's leaders are members of the City Club.
Level of Significance: Local and State
NATIONAL HISTORIC REGISTER BUILDING
A building of major historic and architectural significance, the Old Post Office is constructed in an eclectic Renaissance Revival style. It served as the U. S. Post Office from 1894 to 1935. It was renovated in 1935 and was used as the City Hall until 1955.
(Architectural and Historical Survey of Downtown Baton Rouge, Louisiana – July 1984)