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Lockport's Bewley Building added to National Register of Historic Places

In a ceremony Wednesday, Lockport's Bewley Building, a five-story commercial building at Main and Market streets, received a certificate marking its addition to the National Register of Historic Places.

The building opened in 1929 on the site of two former Hodge Opera Houses, one of which burned down in 1881 and the other in 1928.

The Bewley Building, named after the family that owns it, was regarded as historically significant because of its commercial impact and architecturally significant because of its Italian Renaissance Revival style, according to a nomination prepared last year by Buffalo architect Clinton Brown.

Until 1966, the building's main tenant was a Sears store. Since then, the building has been occupied by dozens of smaller tenants. For about 15 years until his death in 2010, legendary local collector Charles Rand Penney lived there and rented about 20% of the building to store his stuff.

Christopher Cook, co-owner of the building with his uncle David Bewley, accepted the certificate from officials of the state Historic Preservation Office.

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