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Over the next five months, the Historical Association of Lewiston and Lewiston Bicentennial Committee will team with Niagara Frontier Publications to highlight news, events and features commemorating Lewiston’s first 200 years. These exclusive pieces will count down to a grand celebration, scheduled to take place July 1-4, 2022.
535 Center St., DiCamillo Bakery
World-renowned DiCamillo Bakery has long been doing business at 535 Center St., Lewiston, a building with a long presence and history. The building was built by William Hotchkiss and his brother, Calvin, around 1817. It served as a general store for early settlers, supplying them with goods necessary for life on the Niagara Frontier. Items included blades, fabrics of many varieties, fashion items like buttons or ribbons, and alcohol.
Later, it became Lewiston’s first library, until 1962, and from then on it would be home to various small businesses. It contains an architectural element that can be seen in several buildings throughout Lewiston, which are large openings on the second floor of old buildings. These are sometimes called coffin doors, and their purpose was to gain easy access to the elevated floors. This allowed them to pull store goods up to the second floor for easier storage.
Oftentimes, a metal pole was attached right above the coffin door so that they could pull them up easier. The coffin door and pole still adorn DiCamillo Bakery, and it even has the original front door of the building. So, next time you enter the bakery, you can note the historical door that you enter, as well as the historical door that might never be used again.
Today, 535 Center is well known as Lewiston’s DiCamillo Bakery.
On Saturday, July 2, in addition to the Buffalo Philharmonic Concert, the weekly Artisan Farmers Market will be held. There will be a large group yoga session at Academy Park. Both museums (Red Brick and Lewiston Museum at Plain and Niagara streets) will be open all day, and there will be historic walking tours of the village.
In addition, a celebratory parade will kick off at 11 a.m. All community organizations are encouraged to create an historically themed float and dress up in style!
Please consider becoming a sponsor of this wild weekend party. There are sponsorships at many levels for individuals, families and businesses. We need your help to make this a huge success.
To learn more about the bicentennial, see who is involved and to learn about sponsorship opportunities, please visit www.Lewiston200.org.
July 1-4, 2022. Lewiston, New York. Be there!
Thanks to Ken Slaugenhoupt, Tom Collister and Austin Heinz for the article.