St. Albans Bank and City Hall
Backstory and Context
St. Albans, WV was fast becoming a thriving city after the C&O railroad arrived in 1872, and the lumber and coal industries were at the heart of the town. Unfortunately, a disastrous fire in 1906 destroyed many of the important buildings for St. Albans. The wood structures that perished were quickly replaced with brick and concrete buildings, portraying the city's new found prosperity.
The Bank of St. Albans would soon find its permanent home on Main Street, built in 1907. C. A. Zerkle was the pharmacist in St. Albans, who also had a vault in his pharmacy. Many people in town used this vault, but after the fire there was a need for a more stable structure for the town's finances. Zerkle was able to make this happen.
In 1960, the City purchased the Bank of St. Albans for use as City Hall. Renovations began, but the safe and vault were left. Other characteristics of the Bank were also left: the lobby was left mostly unchanged along with the tile floor, and the original woodwork is still intact.