ST. CLOUD - Currently home to the Red Carpet, the Mitchell-Metzroth building started in 1883 and has housed dozens of businesses in its history.

William Mitchell, a notable newspaper publisher who purchased the St. Cloud Democrat in 1863 was one of the original owners of the location. The National Register of Historic Places says Mitchell owned many houses and commercial buildings in St. Cloud and served as a real estate agent. His office was on the second floor of the building from 1883 through the early 1920's.

Through its history, the building has housed anything from grocery stores to dry cleaners. Co-owner of the Red Carpet, Rick Gaetz, says the building was probably the first strip mall in St. Cloud.

"We call it the original strip mall of St. Cloud, there's four different stalls and each is two stories-there were many different tenants," Gaetz says.

The Red Carpet moved to the location in 1971. The bar originally started across the street in what was the Grand Central Hotel building. After a fire, the Red Carpet moved to the Mitchell building and started with the Keller Bar in the basement.

The building architecture features Milwaukee cream-colored bricks and is one of the few remaining examples of Italianate style in St. Cloud. The year "1883" appears in each pediment on the building. Gaetz says the building is beautiful and was orignally challenging to remodel and maintain.

"You really had to rework it from top to bottom with a new roof, new windows, all new AC and plumbing," Gaetz says.

The Red Carpet now occupies the entire building with different bars on each floor. It’s the only company to own every part of the building in its history.

 

W.B. Mitchell (Stearns History Museum)

Some Of The Previous Occupants At The Building
(Stearns History Museum) 

  • A. Lindberg-Saloon and Billiards (1883-1889)
  • Bowing Brothers Grocery Store (1889-1936)
  • St. Cloud Public Library (1901-02)
  • E.O. Lentz Barber Shop (1906-07)
  • J.P. Goetten Meat Market (1906-1911)
  • Avery and Hurrle-Automobiles,Pianos, & Organ/Piano Tuner (19-12-1915)
  • Fritz and Cross - Bookbinders, Booksellers and Printers (1918-1926)
  • Granite City Electric Company (1931-1972)
  • Eagles Club (1938-1942)
  • Lenarz and Sons - Printers (1940-1951)
  • Oderless Dry Cleaners (1943-1972)
  • Wide Awake Dry Cleaners and Shoe Repair (1947-1997)
  • American Legion Club (1947-1949)
  • St. Cloud Business College (1962-1965)

Dan DeBaun, WJON News