118 E. Water St




Holmberg and Erickson Meat Market


118 E. Water St Decorah, IA 52101

Year Built


Architectural Style

Twentieth-Century Commercial

NRHP 2017

According to researcher Robert Davis, the Holmberg brothers William and Edward, Swedish immigrants, and their cousin Harold Erickson had relocated to Decorah in 1919 and established their meat market at 120 E. Water St., just one address east of their new building at 118 E. Water St. A Feb. 22, 1922 article in the Decorah Public Opinion describes the opening of this new building in considerable detail (Jan Full’s NRHP nomination credits local researcher Ed Epperly with identifying the article).The Public Opinion article identifies Albert Austad as the “contractor,” Peter Johnson and Sons for plumbing and heating, the Delco Light Company, Albert Stevens for painting, Fred Carlson for cement work, and Geo. Schulze for brick work, with no mention of an architect. However, Charles Altfillisch’s surviving project list and separate project sheets, gifted to the Luther College Archives by the three Altfillisch grandchildren, identify the Holmberg and Erickson Meat Market as a 1921 project, and include details on costs, contractors, and building materials.

The brick and stone building resembles other Altfillisch work of the period, including the Frank and Bess Germann house at 401 E. Broadway and the 1925 Bertha Mott Department Store at 101 W. Water St. The first-story store front, including its glass transom windows and the copper-framed display windows, is one of the very best preserved historic frontages in downtown Decorah.

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