1-3 Center Street

Sanders Building and Annex


The building at 3 Center, which currently houses Signs Today, was built in 1887 by Miss Elizabeth North (aunt of Ellen North of the famous Jam Kitchen). At the time, it was the only three-story block in town. T.W. Copeland rented it and used the lower floor for a bakery and the upper for dwelling rooms. Elizabeth North died in the early 1890’s, and Ellen North sold the block in 1920 to Fred Batchellor, who had a hardware business on the corner of Center and Main Streets. He used this building as an annex.  In 1940, Fred and Alice Batchellor sold the building to James Cortina, who sold it in 1945 to Donald Sanders. The building was known as the “Sanders Building” for many years.

The smallest business place in Geneseo is located just west of the Sanders Building. In the early 1900’s, it was owned by Bruce Youngs. William Weeks ran a shoe shop here, but the store was known as the “Senate Chamber” because (as a 1911 newspaper noted) “many weighty questions were threshed out here.” William Weeks was described as an “ardent Democrat.”  When Mr. Weeks retired, Bruce Youngs used the building as headquarters for his garage business, and it later served as the Western Union telegraph office. In 1915 Peter Jacuzzo purchased the little building, with plans to use it as a barber shop. A 1956 newspaper wrote that the house was owned by Mrs. Dora Aprile, whose late husband had used it as a shoe shop. She sold it to Donald Sanders, who planned to convert it into additional office space for the Livingston County Leader. It became known as the “Sanders Annex.”