At 253 Historic 25th Street you’ll find a brewery housed in a two-story brick building with square windows, where a neon Rooster has kept watch over the street for the past 20 years.
The building named The Kansas City Liquor House was added to the historical registry by Ogden City in 1996. It was constructed in 1890 during the time Ogden was gaining steam as an up and coming railroad town.
The property was owned by the Eccles Lumber company from 1892 until 1908, when they sold it to William H. Gampton, husband to Berta Eccles. So while it was technically sold from the Eccles Lumber Company, it appears that it remained connected to the Eccles family until 1924.
There were a handful of owners and businesses that occupied the Kansas City Liquor House after that; Tai Yuen Chinese Goods (1899-1910), the Wing On Hong Company (1911-1918), as well as the Reliable Furniture Exchange (1915-1935).
Sometime after 1935 the Ogden Home Builders Association became owners of the property and in 1947 they deeded it to the Salvation Army. What followed over the next 50 years is what some would call the “dark ages” in Ogden’s history. The buildings downtown were run down, crime was rampant, and businesses deserted. Instead of 25th street being a place people congregated, it became a place to be avoided.
In 1994 after seeing the beauty in the architecture and the potential of the street, would-be-owners Pete and Kym Buttschardt set their sights on renovating the Kansas City Liquor House and opening a brewery. They thought at the time if they could be catalyst in bringing people downtown to have a positive experience on the street, perhaps more business owners would follow suit. They opened Roosters Brewing in 1995 and earlier this year Rooster’s celebrated 20 years in business.
There must have been a special kind of pride for Pete and Kym when last year 25th street was named one of the top 10 historic streets in the country.Today there are more restaurants and businesses on the street than there have ever been, and if you ask any business owner or city official they will tell you that it didn’t just happen by accident.
It happened because of people like Pete and Kym who cared and continue to care about this town and put in an immense amount of work to making it better. We know it’s because they wanted to make sure that the story that is told in the generations to come will be one that we can all be proud of.
What started off a liquor house in 1890, now houses a brewery where you can grab a drink with a friend and enjoy a great meal some hundred and twenty-five years later. How’s that for full circle?