2010 Main Street has had many incarnations over the years. Built circa 1900, it started life as a hotel as seen in the first photo, looking like a scene from the old west with a field stone foundation, clapboard siding, front wood deck, wooden sidewalk and hitching post.
Joe Brown was the proprietor of the hotel and saloon next door when a 1919 wartime prohibition act went into effect. He moved his stock of beverages from the saloon into the hotel basement, hoping to be able to re-engage in the saloon business when the war was over. But instead, he became the first person in McHenry County to be prosecuted for the prohibition act.
According to court records, he testified that a roomer in his hotel was in the company of a woman of ill repute and when Joe forced her to leave, the roomer got angry. He concocted a scheme to trick Brown into supplying him with whiskey on the pretense of illness. Then he reported him to the authorities.
The basement was searched and agents confiscated 96 quarts of beer, 44 bottles of mixed liquors, bottles of Riesling wine, apricot brandy, rock & rye and more. Brown was ordered to pay a fine of $50 plus court costs.
By the 1930s, the building was painted white and held a diner as seen by the partially obscured sign in the second photo, which says "DINNERS, LUNCHES and (... baking?)". By that time, the front stoop, steps and sidewalk are concrete, and the hitching post is gone with nary a horse or buggy in site. Later it became a shoe repair shop.
By the 1960s, it was covered in brick-patterned asphalt siding that was popular in the 1930s - 1950s. Looking pretty ragged by then, the building was turned into apartments.
By the 1980s, it was given another facelift. The four front windows were removed and replaced with large picture windows on both floors, the front door was moved to the side and a small side porch roof added.
Looking nothing like it did in it's early days, one must wonder if in some dark dusty crevice of the basement, a nice little bottle of creme de menthe can still be uncovered.