Minard Hall

201 E. Main Street     (View on map)

Image Credit: St. Charles Public Library
This red brick building, constructed by Ira Minard in the 1840s, has served numerous purposes during its existence. In its early days, the Banking House of Bowman and Baird, law offices, and St. Charles's first opera house, Minard Hall, were located here. The Minard Hall Opera House, located on the second floor, offered various types of entertainment ranging from concerts, political speeches, plays, comedies, and Magic Lantern Shows.

St. Charles Office Supply occupied the building for many years before it was operated as McNally's Irish Pub from 1998 until 2010. The building now houses The Office Dining & Spirits restaurant.

The small structure attached to the Minard Hall, currently a dining area for The Office, was the law office of Judge William Barry. Barry, who moved to St. Charles in 1840, became a well known, honored lawyer, and served as county judge. It is rumored that Abraham Lincoln visited the Judge in these quarters.

Image Credit: Then and Now by Alice Cairo

From the late 1880s until 1906, the first St. Charles Library was located in the former offices of Judge Barry. Miss Jenny Lewis, daughter of Dr. James K. Lewis, served as the town's first librarian. In 1906, the Library moved into the new Carnegie Building on 5th and Main Streets, and became a public library. 

Image Credit: Then and Now by Alice Cairo

For additional photographs see:

    Then and Now 
    St. Charles on Parade p 14
    St. Charles Illinois p 11

For information about related buildings see:


  • Clauter, Hazel. Our Community--St. Charles. 1967.
  • Durant, Pliny. Passing in Review: Reminiscences of Men Who Lived in St. Charles.
  • Pearson, Ruth Ann. Reflections of St. Charles. Elgin: Brethern Press, 1976.
  • Rhodebeck, Ashley. "Downtown Eatery Pays Tribute to St. Charles' History." Kane County Chronicle 7 January 2011
  • Rhodebeck, Ashley. "McNally's Plans for Move Across Fox River." Kane County Chronicle 24 February 2010.

See also