The building known as the Jim O'Laughlin store of Rome has an odd history which many people do not know, it being located in the north part of town near the depot.
    This old building was first put up in 1860 with clay brick and was a very crude structure which people would not appreciate any more. The foundation was made of clay brick.
    The squares were dried in the sun and after being dried were baked to make them hard. It took several days before this could be done so that they could be handled for construction purposes.
    The siding was made of clay brick and a glass front. After the building was completed it was eighty feet long and sixty feet wide.
    The building was used for a store where almost anything could be bought. There was no harm in going into this store and buying a portion of the products of saloons in the early days, which would now be forbidden.
    Rome was a nice sized country town at that time and the people were very proud of their town. It had a bank, church, several stores and carried a great deal fo the farmer's business for the size of the town.
    Pete O'Laughlin kept store for several years, then he turned it over to his sons. They used it for a boarding house, as the railroad was put through Rome in the early part of the nineteenth century.
    Before this time a single railroad had been used in Rome, but this was the first double track. It soon put Rome in a much better condition as it carried on more business and a large population for a river town.
    After the building was used for a boarding house it was built over and a great change was made in it for modern times.
    Jim O'Laughlin changed it into a store and had fine store some time, but has closed out his business now. The store is now used for a dance hall under the name of O'Laughlin hall.---Flora Peterson in Sophomore English Class.


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