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Loew-Define Grocery Store and Home
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Loew-Define Grocery Store and Home
Courtesy of Cuyahoga Valley National Park, photo by Jeff Winstel

Built in 1850 the Loew-Define Grocery Store is a Greek Revival style building associated with the early commercial life of Navarre, a small town along the Ohio and Erie Canal. John Loew, a Justice of the Peace, bought the property in 1860 at a time when Navarre was a major commercial center on the canal. The town had 11 hotels, 12 grain elevators and 10 dry goods stores. From 1860 until the early 1900s, the building was known as Loew and Son Grocery. Before he was President, William McKinley tried his first court case here in 1867. In the early 20th century James Define bought the store. Define was the son of Italian immigrants and grew up in the adjacent neighborhood, known as “Italy Hill” by the local community.

The two-and-one-half story brick building has a gable-front orientation. Notable Greek Revival features include the large molded entablature with gable end returns. Windows in the gable evidence the original six over six glazing. The storefront features large plate glass display windows with transoms flanking a central entrance. A large doorway opening in the half story attached to the rear wall has been bricked in, but the slight projection out from the roof peak above indicates the opening was used for loading goods into the upper floor storage area. An Italianate wooden porch was a later addition to the side elevation.

The Loew-Define Grocery Store and Home is located at 202 S. Market St., in Navarre. It is a private residence, and not open to the public.

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