Lecture will present the history of the Union Block
Local researcher and historian Pat White will present a lecture entitled “The History of the Union Block” on Tuesday, May 21, at 7 p.m. in the International Room of Chadwick Library at Iowa Wesleyan College.
The presentation will be illustrated by slides of historic photographs and other memorabilia.
Located on the north side of the square, the Union Block is one of the most historically-significant buildings in Mt. Pleasant. Since its opening in 1861, it has housed a variety of retail shops and offices.
Belle Babb Mansfield, the first woman licensed to practice law in the United States, passed the law examination on third floor of the Union Block in 1869.
The Opera House or Union Hall on the top floor of the Union Block hosted many community events including lectures, plays, dances, and other social gatherings. Frederick Douglas and Sojourner Truth both presented lectures in the Union Hall.
The Union Block was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1991 and added to the list of Iowa’s Most Endangered Buildings in 2008.
It is currently being renovated by Main Street Mt. Pleasant and the Union Block Revitalization Committee.
The event is organized by the Mt. Pleasant Historic Preservation Commission.