National Register of Historic Places in Alameda County
The Croll Building is an assemblage of three historical structures with one small recent addition carefully blended with the historical structures.
The corner three-story building was built in 1879 as Britt's Hotel and formed the nucleus for the Croll Hotel, which later occupied it and adjacent buildings.
The two-story building to the north along Webster Street was moved to this site about 1908 from Croll's Gardens, an amusement park and bathing resort across the street from the hotel site.
In 1908, a one-story structure was located at the northwest corner of this building along Webster Street and a two-story structure at the southeast corner along Central Avenue. Each of these small buildings had also been relocated from Croll's Gardens about 1908.
The two-story addition was structurally damaged in a 1980 earthquake, demolished, and replaced by the present small one-story structure at its site.
Architecturally, the Croll Building is a fine example of Mansard and Italianate design, carefully blended into a single architectural statement.
It is one of the earliest taverns in the Bay Area, dating to its construction in 1879 by Patrick Britt and in constant use for that purpose to the present time, excepting the Prohibition years.
It is also significant for its close association with a landmark bathing resort and amusement park operating during the late nineteenth century.
Finally, the Croll Building was closely associated with the training and housing of prominent boxers in the early twentieth century, when the San Francisco Bay Area was at the peak of its importance in the boxing industry.
The Croll Building is also California Historical Landmark 954.
Buildings that Moved
It's not just that the people of the American West are restless, the buildings themselves sometimes pack up and move when - for one reason or another - the neighborhood no longer suits them or the neighbors no longer want them or opportunity waits down the road.
And when buildings remain in place, they are often searching for their identities.
Colfax Freight Depot (Moved Twice), Colfax
Commodore Watkins House, Atherton
Coyle-Foster Barn, Shasta State Historic Park
Croll Building, Alameda
Dallam-Merritt House, San Francisco
Duatre's Store, Monterey
Nevada-California-Oregon Railway Depot, Alturas
Old Log Jail (Moved Twice), Markleeville
Old Mammoth Saloon (Moved Twice), Mammoth Lakes
Old North San Juan School, North San Juan
Old St. Patrick's Church (Moved Twice), San Francisco
Of the buildings and structures we have visited, the original Reno Arch holds the record for number of moves. It has been moved five times since it was built in 1926.
Jax Truckee Diner holds the distance title. The building moved from New Jersry to Pennsylvanis in 1948, then from Pennsylvania to Califonia in 1992.
Probably the most ambitious relocation occurred on July 4th 1904, when the Southern Pacific Railroad loaded most of the town of Wadsworth, Nevada, onto rail cars and transported the town thirty miles west to create a new town which became known as Sparks.