Friday, May 6, 2011

Springfield's Norb Andy's is Open Again-- Part 2: History

It's great to go to a place with a wonderful atmosphere and good food, but even better if it has a history. And, Norb Andy's has plenty of that.

In yesterday's post, I mentioned that the original structure was built in 1837 when Virgil Hickox (I wonder if he was any relation to Wild Bill Hickok/Hickock as I have also seen his name spelled that way?). His family remained on the site for decades. As his family grew, so did the building until we have what we have today, the Hickox Building.

The first non-residential use of the building was when it was called the Sangamo Club circa 1890-1895. After the club moved, several businesses located in the building, including the coroner's office and his funeral parlor.

During Prohibition, a speakeasy was located in the bottom floor, and ever after, there has been a long tradition of watering holes at the site. In 1932, one of Springfield's first liquor licenses was issued to "Hoot" Francis to open and operate a tavern.

This information comes from the Norb Andy's menu.

More History to Come. --RoadDog

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