The Chariton Historic Preservation Commission presented its annual preservation award Thursday morning to Trish McKinley and her husband, State Sen. Paul McKinley, to recognize their conservation and creative reuse of the historic Garfield School building in southeast Chariton. Alyse Hunter (left), commission chair, and Trish McKinley are shown here in front of the building.
The McKinleys purchased the bulding in 1998 when it was retired by the Chariton Community School District as headquarters for their business, McKinley Inc. Rather than modifying the building, the couple refreshed its interiors and used strikingly modern dividers, furniture and artwork to create offices, a design studio, conference room and warehousing and shipping space (in the former gymnasium) without obscuring the fact soaring and generous spaces previously had served other purposes. The core of the Garfield building is a refaced 1880s structure to which an addition was made in the 1940s to house a gymnasium and additional classrooms.
The "McKinley Inc" sign over the main entrance is purposely understated, allowing "Garfield School" to be easily identified. The building is the last remaining designated "Fallout Shelter" in Chariton.
This is the former Garfield School library and study hall converted into a conference room with original shelving left almost as a sculptural installation. A new room-zoned forced-air heating and cooling system allows energy-efficient climate control.
Another of the second-floor classrooms has been converted into the McKinley Inc. design studio.
Members of the Historic Preservation Commission are Alyse Hunter, Melody Wilson, Martin Buck, Larry Clark and Frank Myers.