Rounded arches and a tall false front characterize Virginia City’s first brick building, built by clothing merchant E. J. Walter in 1875. It is said that construction using locally produced bricks was accomplished as a test before the building of the Madison County Courthouse. Backed by banker Henry Elling, Simeon R. Buford opened the region’s largest grocery store here in 1878. Buford’s was the supply point for most of southwestern Montana, including the infant “Butte City.” In later years, Butte’s huge warehouses would, in turn, supply Buford’s own business. Most of the merchandise displayed, including the canned goods, came from Buford’s inventory.