Built in 1892 in downtown Bellingham, the Barlow Building stands at 211 W Holly St. in the central portion of Bellingham’s Central Business District. The building remains as one of the few, intact single-story commercial buildings along the Central Business District’s main thoroughfare of W. Holly Street. The period of significance for the Barlow Building, 1892 to 1925, encompasses the building’s date of construction (1892) and formative period of use as a grocery store, bar and seminal function as a leather goods specialty store, culminating in a front facade remodel indicating the store’s success and permanence within the community.
The Barlow Building draws its architectural significance from its prominent and stylistically distinctive front facade which was designed to maximize the visibility of the modest structure amongst the surrounding buildings. The compact, rectangular, single-story brick masonry building fills the southeast 25′ of two lots with a total footprint dimension of 25′ by 110′. The narrow, primary front, northeast facade faces W. Holly Street. Employing un-reinforced brick masonry walls, a broad storefront with plate glass and leaded windows, decorative front facade brickwork, a tall, articulated parapet, and a flat roof, the Barlow Building present an intact, character-defining example of a single-storied commercial building within Bellingham’s Central Business District.