The Old Trails Museum in the former Western Savings & Loan
Now occupied by the Old Trails Museum, the building at 212 North Kinsley Avenue was built in 1921 and housed a series of financial institutions including the Union Bank and Trust (1921-1924), First National Bank of Winslow (1924-1946), Valley National Bank (1946-1950), First State Savings and Loan (1951-1958), and Western Savings and Loan (1958 -1985).
As was common for commercial construction in the 1920s, the building was oriented for pedestrians rather than automobiles, with no setback from the sidewalk and no parking lot. The one-story structure was built of brick and wood, with stucco added to the rear and side walls for stabilization. By the 1940s, the façade boasted pillars and a false peaked roof resembling a Greek temple, as well as large showcase windows that Valley National Bank used for art displays.
The building was remodeled several times by the various institutions, with the last major change to the façade done by Western Savings and Loan when they bought the building in 1958. Then-owner R.C. Kaufman said he sold the building to Western Savings and Loan because they could afford the extensive exterior and interior repairs it so badly needed, which resulted in the removal of the Greek-temple façade.
Western Savings and Loan donated the building to the Navajo County Historical Society in 1985. After four years of building improvements and artifact donations from Winslow residents, the Old Trails Museum held its grand opening in July 1989. The bank’s original marble-faced counters, mosaic tile floor, and vault provide a historic backdrop for the museum’s exhibits and collections.
The Winslow branch of the Navajo County Historical Society incorporated as the Winslow Historical Society in 1997, which now owns and operates the Old Trails Museum. The museum building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places as part of the Winslow Commercial Historic District in 1989, and it was listed on its own in 2020. The Old Trails Museum is free and open to the public from 11 am to 3 pm, Tuesdays through Saturdays.
Entry submitted by OTM Director Ann-Mary Lutzick; www.oldtrailsmuseum.org