Henkel Opera House, Lenoir, NC

This building was built by Henkel, Craig & Co. in 1908 for the sale of horses, mules, harnesses and buggies. The first floor was designed as a showroom for buggies and carriages, while the basement stabled horses and mules. The second floor was occupied by Henkel Opera House and showcased a large stage and seating for 1,500 people. The building later became home to the Caldwell Motor Company, and finally W.E. Shaw Furniture Company.

The building is now in the process of being restored as part of a tax-credit project, and will be converted into an event venue. The first floor will have a large event room for weddings and conferences, with a lounge on a historical mezzanine overlooking the space. The second floor will house small offices, conference rooms and a small theater (utilizing the original stage). The basement will contain a wood shop, several event rooms and a commercial kitchen. An interior stair to the second floor will be added to the first floor, and an exterior stair and elevator will be added to connect the basement to second floor.