Sunday, December 25, 2011

Lost Memphis: Neil's

On August 8, I reported some breaking news: that Neil's had caught on fire (see photos here).  Well, this past week, demolition finally got underway and Madison loses yet another pre-war commercial structure.

The building to the left with the blue roof is home to Madison Automotive.  Undamaged by the fire, it was formerly known as Anderson's.  My great-grandfather worked there for many years in the 1940s and 50s.  The building to the right is known as The Vine.  It once housed the Idlewild Movie Theater.  My grandparents lived across the street in the Biltmore Apt. Bldg. in the late 40s; they remember the light from the marquee keeping them up at night. 

Many of the bricks are being salvaged.  If you notice, the corner of the building is still in place...

...and it contains the name of the great Calvin Farrar.  He had done both the permanent wall art on Neil's facade, as well as seasonal window art.  I have done previous posts on Calvin here  and here.  

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