The Northern Colorado Feeders Supply building has been a part of the fabric of Fort Collins since the turn of the last century, serving as a store, grain elevator, warehouse and gathering place. Since the early 1900’s, farmers and ranchers have brought and bought grain, drunk coffee, and talked about crops and weather. Townspeople have stopped by to visit and buy a bag of dog food or maybe a few baby chicks for backyard coops.

Now on the National Register of Historic Places and the State Register of Historic Properties, we’ve carefully restored and preserved its historic architectural details, as well as the character and charm that made it a symbol of community and honest, locally produced food.

1915, Workers install a pipeline near the railroad tracks.

The property offers a great window into Ft. Collins’ history. Back in 1864, the land where our building now sits abutted the parade grounds of the original fort that was Fort Collins. Fast forward to 1905, when the building (first named the Poudre Elevator Company) was constructed on the corner of Linden and Willow Streets, conveniently near the tracks of the Colorado and Southern Railway. The original structures included a single story office/retail section facing Linden, a two-story grain elevator and a hay warehouse. By then, Ft. Collins had a population of 8,200 and sheep and sugar beets helped keep the economy going.

In 1917, the building became the Co-operative Mercantile Company and in 1922, it was renamed the Farmers Elevator and Produce Co. By this time, the population had surpassed 9,000 and farming was still a mainstay. Colorado State Agricultural College would soon celebrate its farming roots by tasking freshmen to whitewash the first “A” (for Aggies) on a hill overlooking Ft. Collins.

Farmer’s Co-Op, 1949

During the Depression and WWII, the building went through several owners and names (Reid’s Elevator, Farmer’s Co-op), and survived the post-war building boom that saw many historic places disappear. By 1957, the building had become the Feeders Supply Company. In other news, town population had doubled and the ag college (then Colorado A & M) became Colorado State University.

Feeders Supply, 1979

In 1976, Dennis Nater bought the place and continued to supply the community until the family sold to a development company in 2014. (The Northern Colorado Feeders Supply business has since moved to 300 Hickory Street.) Jack and Ginger Graham bought the property in 2015 and began rolling up their sleeves to make Ginger and Baker a reality.

Construction and restoration on this old place presented a unique set of challenges. The Historic Assessment sums it up pretty well: “Some alterations are ’cowboy’ or ‘farmer’ construction, referring to something being built hastily to meet an immediate need by a person not well-versed in the craft.”

But ‘cowboy construction’ aside, the building’s stone foundation was found to be sound, while the interior boasted vintage brick walls, patinaed wooden beams and sliding doors that have withstood the test of time. Those sliding doors are among the historic details that we were charged with preserving, as well as the Linden Street façade with its distinctive recessed entrance.

We’ve also shored up the gable roof and grain elevator that attest to the building’s purpose, and the stepped parapets that add unique personality to this old place that’s served Ft. Collins for more than 100 years. And while you’ll no longer be able to purchase local grain, you can definitely find a mighty fine selection of locally made pies.

About Ginger and Baker

The Ginger and Baker Teaching Kitchen

Join Ginger and take a tour of some our Teaching Kitchen classes! Dedicated to play, community and learning, our Teaching Kitchen offers a regular schedule of classes on cooking, baking, cocktails and crafting, plus kids’ stuff and a monthly book club. Check out the schedule…

Patios at Ginger and Baker

Join Ginger as she takes us on a tour of Ginger and Baker’s outside spaces, from the dog-friendly North Patio, to the popsicle window with treats for people and pups, to al fresco dining out on the Café’s patio, and upstairs to the Rooftop with…

Spring Chickens

We have video of the free-range chicken that once roamed the sidewalk and lots of photos of baby chicks for sale. We even kept the old metal chicken feeders that were piled up in the basement. After much cleaning, they are fun containers for succulents. It’s part…

The Cafe at Ginger and Baker

We have breakfast all day, juicy burgers, chicken pot pie and lots of fresh-baked biscuits. Check out the menu link below! Spring Cafe Menu…

The Wine Cellar Event Space

In our latest video, take a tour of the Wine Cellar with Ginger Graham. When we were excavating the basement of our old grain mill, we uncovered a one-of-a-kind jewel: The Wine Cellar, a beautiful, intimate space where historic stone walls and sturdy old-growth beams…

One Man’s Trash…

Like everything in my grandmother’s trunk that we weren’t allowed to open while she was living. The crocheted doilies and embroidered tea towels and the 3-foot long black and white picture of an entire town in southwest Oklahoma. I have boxes of things from my…

Inspired Design: Kate Dubas

The renovation of our old mill has not only created a new chapter for the building, but it also inspired a new chapter for one of the artists who helped bring it about. Fort Collins designer Kate Dubas partnered with Ginger Graham on several of…

Celebrating One Year!

It’s hard to believe a year has passed since our Grand Opening on November 18, 2017! We’ve had the pleasure of meeting thousands of people from near and far, and enjoyed tremendous support from the Fort Collins community. We are thankful. From the Ribbon Cutting…

The Mill Top Event Space

Join Ginger Graham in the Mill Top as she shares some of the history and renovation details on this wonderful, historic event space that’s now a perfect spot for celebrations of all kinds! This old building was built for a single purpose: to store and…

The Cache: The Last Piece

Video: Join Ginger Graham in The Cache at Ginger and Baker as she shares how Fort Collins’ history influenced the restaurant’s design and how NoCo farmers and ranchers influence the menu. Read more: Here’s a bit more detail on how The Cache came about. In…

Coffee Shop History & Renovation

I’m a sucker for old buildings and old things. Especially when they demonstrate human ingenuity. This old Grain Mill is a shining example of the practical decision making required to transport, store, bag and sell feed. The building was built for the single purpose of…

Renovation & History : The Rooftop Patio

Join Ginger as she shares details on the restoration of the old Mill and offers a tour of the Rooftop Patio. Insider’s tip: You can order off both the Rooftop Menu featuring delicious small plates and The Cache Menu while sitting outdoors on the Rooftop…

Popsicle Window, Then & Now

While researching our old building’s past, we learned a lot about its 100 year+ history. The location of the building was chosen as it would be adjacent to the railroad tracks of the Colorado and Southern Railway line for loading and unloading of goods to…

Craftsman, Artist & Blacksmith

If you’ve ever hung up your coat at Ginger and Baker, you may have noticed the beautiful, hand-wrought railroad spike coat racks in The Cache, Café and Wine Cellar. Or maybe you’ve chanced on the sturdy railroad spike bottle openers in the Market. Local craftsman…

Before and After

I admit it, I’m a sucker for before and after pictures. Just the title “before and after” creates a sense of anticipation.  Before and after creates a way to peek into someone else’s life and see what’s possible; to see approaches you hadn’t thought of…

Pin and Scroll

Pin & Scroll

Taking inspiration from salvage Over the past months of restoration and construction, we’ve been incredibly lucky to work with a number of skilled craftsmen and women who have helped bring Ginger and Baker to life. Forrest Cramer of Pin & Scroll is one of those…

Making of a Pumpkin Patch

The Making of a Pumpkin Patch

A “Red Warty Thing” pumpkin from last year’s garden. Notes From the Farm by Ginger Graham I’ve always wanted a big pumpkin patch. There’s nothing more fun than walking through vines of Red Warty Things and too many One-Too-Many’s or beautiful Orange Smoothies and Big…

Restoration

Restoration & Construction, Part VI

Topless in Fort Collins By Ginger Graham No, we’re not talking about the recent judgement issuing an injunction against Ft. Collins’ ordinance banning women from going topless, we’re just worried about our building! With late winter weather dropping rain and snow, and the slightly unstable…

Restoration & Construction, Part V

Restoration & Construction, Part V

The Feed Mill’s iconic stepped parapets on the top of the building where grain was stored. Nooses and Their Uses by Ginger Graham The sight of a noose hanging from the rafters is a startling sight to most folks, but if you’ve ever worked in…

Restoration & Construction, Part IV, Historic Windows and Doors

Restoration & Construction, Part IV, Historic Windows and Doors

Original front door. Windows, Sashes and Doors, Oh My! by Ginger Graham In 2013, the State Historical Fund and History Colorado received a grant to evaluate the condition and historic features of our Feeders Supply building. Their 90-page report traces the building’s history from construction…

Restoration & Construction, Part III – Molasses!

Restoration & Construction, Part III – Molasses!

Vintage Molasses Feed Sign Sticky Business by Ginger Graham While the external work on the new construction is highly visible, there is also a LOT of work going on inside the old Feed Mill that is not.  And it isn’t always pretty. The basement of…

Restoration Part 2

Restoration & Construction, Part II

It’s fun to see our name in front of all of this work. In a few months, the real Ginger and Baker sign will be on the front of the old Mill. The south and east outlines of the new building Footings, Forms & Foundation…

Restoration Part 1

Restoration & Construction Part I

Starting at the beginning by Ginger Graham Construction and renovation are well underway at the future site of Ginger and Baker and many people have expressed interest in the process of restoring our 100+ year-old building, so we’re excited to share our progress here on…

Sneak Peek

Sneak Peek at Our Plans!

History, Community, Creativity and Pie When people ask why we’ve undertaken the task of preserving this old building the answer is simple. It just seemed right. Our parents or grandparents were farmers and the building brings back memories. The way it feels, the smells, we’ve…

NOCO Feeder Supply Building

The Northern Colorado Feeders Supply Building

Feeders Supply at night. Photo by George Hendrix Celebrating Our Roots The Northern Colorado Feeders Supply building has been a part of the fabric of Fort Collins since the turn of the last century, serving as a store, grain elevator, warehouse and gathering place. Since…

Groundbreaking

Groundbreaking!

Breaking Ground at Ginger and Baker By Chef Deb Traylor It’s hard to believe we’ve officially broken ground on this incredible project. While Ginger has had the idea of a pie shop for several years, she and I began to talk about making it a…