In 1886, this beautiful brick structure was built by Dolson Bush Searle. D.B. Searle was born in New York in 1840. A graduate of Columbia Law School, Searle served in the Civil War and fought at the second battle at Bull Run. He came to St. Cloud in 1871 and was the St. Cloud City and Stearns County attorney, as well as U.S. district attorney. In 1892, Searle was a Republican candidate for congress, but lost the election. Interestingly, D.B. Searle was in attendance at Ford’s Theater the night President Lincoln was assassinated.
The 3-story building, constructed with pressed red brick, was designed by A.E. Hussey, who also designed the Mitchell Building, which is now The Red Carpet Nightclub. Originally a bank, teller windows remain behind the main floor bar, and original flooring still covers the vestibule. Granite trimmings on the front of the building were designed to match the Searle McClure building next door. The cost to build was $38,000. Over the years, the building housed two banks, a Masonic Lodge, Pan Motor Company offices, a funeral home, and more.
1886-1897: German American Bank
1886-1888: D.B. Searle’s office
1886-1912: Masonic Hall for St. Cloud Freemason Lodge No. 23
1899-1900: Louis P. Carrington, Tailor
1906-1914: Tileston Milling Company
1911-1924: Farmer’s State Bank
1917-1918: Pan Motor Company Offices
1925-1926: Goedert-Rengel Printing Company
1935-1936: St. Cloud Musician’s Association
1935-1936: Town Mart Furniture
1939-1970: Colbert Funeral Home
1971-1974 Next To New Shop
1975: Solva Piano Tuning & Repair
1975: Sunshine Innocence Leather
1975: The building was sold to Bill Naegele for $6,500. Due to the severe disrepair, Mr. Naegele spent $400,000 to renovate the building.
1978-2012: D.B. Searle’s Restaurant & Bar
2012-Present: D.B. Searle’s Bar & Nick’s Third Floor restaurant
1982: (June) Searle building placed on the National Register of Historic Places.
1985: Building purchased by manager Jeff Celusta and his wife Holly.
1989: (February) Friday night fire on the second floor from and electric motor set off the sprinkler system. Minor smoke and water damage.
1998: D.B. Searle’s bar and restaurant closed for financial reasons, with no warning to the public or employees.
1998: Building purchased and bar and restaurant re-opened by Tom Emer.
2007: John Timmerman and Jocar Inc. purchase D.B. Searle’s from Straight Up Unlimited Inc.
2012: Dan, Mark, Andrew, and Nick Barth purchase the building and business from Jocar, Inc. and transform the third and fourth floors into Nick’s Third Floor restaurant, while preserving the rich history of D.B. Searle’s bar.