The east and west walls of The Star Garage are the original
walls built in 1903 as the Crawford and Davis Livery Stable.
Notice the many small windows along the walls which provided
light to every stall in the stable. The livery stable sold
and rented horses, mules, buggies and wagons, and also rented
stalls to homeowners living in the downtown area who lacked
space to stable their own animals. In October of 1903, the
first major fire swept through the building. Several other
livery stables used the building until 1917 when the Oliver
and Venable Livery Stable, the last remaining in Gainesville,
was replaced by an automobile dealership. J. R. Fowler opened
his "Star Garage" as the Studebaker and Cadillac
dealership for the area. A showroom and offices were built
on the north end of the building with large plate glass
windows. By 1931, the Fowler business had been through a
number of transformations both within its business dealings
and subsequent minor modifications to the building.
In April of 1931, a new airplane was being painted
and the banana oil being applied to its wings ignited. The
ensuing fire spread through the building resulting in the
destruction of the wooden framing in most of the building.
In August 1931, the Fowler Buick Company opened in its new
building advertising the latest Buicks on display and car
storage facilities in its practically fireproof building.
A metal truss system was used in the reconstruction of the
roof. Large ventilated skylights were also installed at this
time. The building has since been through many automobile
dealerships until 1933 when it was used as a bus station.
Greyhound and a number of other businesses used
the terminal until 1939 when the new bus terminal was built.
Once again, it became an automobile dealership until 1977
when the City of Gainesville acquired the building as a part
of its downtown redevelopment program. In 1986, The Star Garage
was renovated for law offices by the firm Clayton, Johnston,
Quincey, Ireland, Felder, Gadd, Smith & Roundtree which
is now known as Clayton-Johnston, P.A. This was a thoughtful
and careful restoration and many of the original features
are incorporated into its present use. The Star Garage has
seen many different uses in its 85-year lifetime and is a
perfect example of adapted reusage. The most recent adaptation
preserves essential features of the architecture while providing
comfortable, effective use of space.