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Solaro Art Gallery
Dick's Brewery Tower Building
Quincy, Illinois
     The Octoberfest Celebration this past October gave our team the perfect opportunity to see inside one of Quincy's oldest buildings. The historic district of 9th and York was the site of the gathering, and combined good food, cold beer, and tours of the underground tunnel to draw a very large crowd.
     During a break, one team member parted from the crowd and went inside the Solaro Art Gallery. It was like stepping back in time. Taking the tour, which encompassed five floors, was like walking back through the years where the vats were housed that were used for cooking the ingredients, as well as where the barrels were rolled across the street by the underground tunnel.
     Quincy has a rich brew history, and as many as 10 well known breweries were located in the city at t he turn of the 20th century. Dick's Brewery was purchased by three brothers, John, Jacob, and Matthew, who at the time were on their way to Iowa. They had heard the tales of an area with a bubbling fresh spring, and stopped to check it out. They bought the ground for $5000 and started construction on the Brewery in 1857. 
     The area of 9th and York was where there was a series of buildings which housed the business as well as the residences of the brothers, and these homes still stand today. There are stories of a rail tunnel system from the river to the Brewery, that used to be on 6th and State to 9th and York, ending with the brewery, and that this system used to bring in huge blocks of ice. You are still able to see part of this system in the building located on the south side of the building. These tunnels are in great shape and the water is still clear and cold in the basement. 
     Sadly, the brewery was not able to stand the financial problems that plague many businesses and was bankrupt in 1951. Many of the buildings were torn down over the years. But this building remains, and is the location of this wonderful Art Gallery. The Art Gallery has many pieces of art made by local artists and she has a room that holds many memories of the grand ole Dick's Brewery. So the next time you are out and about, stop in and see Liz, and see what she has to offer. And tell her that Il-M0 Entity Trackers sent you!
Here is where you can read about the history of this building, and learn of some of the changes it has endured over the years.
Getting a tour of the 
building. Seems so empty
now, but can imagine when
it was in full, operating
This shows where the rice
vats used to be housed. 
There were 2 per floor, and
were fed from the roof
The steps leading up to the
tower. The tower was 5
stories high, but there were only 3 floors. Lots of climbing had to be done to reach the top.
The trap door, located in the ceiling. Was used to shift down the rye to the vats below.
Hmmm, can you guess where this door leads?
The basement. There is only two rooms in this section, but the tunnel which extended across the street was in this area.
Bird's eye view from
above. Quite a walk,
but so worth it to
see such a sight.
By Midnight Syndicate
From the CD Cemetery Gates, 2008
Used with permission of Midnight Syndicate
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