Ash Building


In 1905, these two lots were the original location of the Idaho Mercantile store. In October 1906, the business was sold to the Southern Idaho Mercantile Company for $1,000. It was destroyed by the September 5, 1910 fire. In 1912, A. D. Ash erected the present two-story commercial building. The upper floors were rented out as the Ash Rooms, a doctor’s office and later the Hotel Rupert. For many years, virtually all the second floors along the north side of the square were connected and used as hotels, apartments and rooms. Banquets were also served on part of the second floor of this building. A common doorway in the west wall allowed for additional seating in the adjacent building. A dumb waiter was constructed in the rear addition, to provide rapid transport of food to the second floor. You can still see the concrete dumb waiter shaft rising six to eight feet above the roof of the rear addition. Many businesses of various types have occupied each half of the lower level of this building. Early tenants included four drug stores, an ice-cream shop, three cafes, Ray's Sport Shop, several beer parlors with billiards and pool, and a barber shop. Sinclair Shutters, a family photography studio, was here in the mid-1970s. More recent tenants have included Calamity Jane's and Malinas, women's dress shops, a computer training center and Progressive Behavior Systems, a therapy and counseling service.