Brewer Hotel & Portland Daily Bugle
The Bissman Building
Peter Bissman built the Bissman Building in 1886 for his expanded wholesale grocery store. In the early 1930s, residents of Downtown Mansfield would wake up to the rich aromas of the store’s personal coffee blends and return home to the smell of roasting peanuts.
The building possesses an early Romantic Gothic style. You may notice a close resemblance to The Ohio State Reformatory. They share the same architect and were, as a matter of fact, built in the same year.
Shawshank Trail Fun Fact
The Bissman Building was the site of the Brewer Hotel where Brooks stayed and hanged himself soon after being paroled from the Shawshank Prison. Please note that only the front of the building was used in the movie. The actual “hotel room” where Brooks stayed was staged at The Ohio State Reformatory. The building was also utilized in the film as the front office of the Portland Daily Bugle. While in front of the Bissman Building, look ahead (south) to find the City Mills Building on the corner of Fifth and Main Streets as you imagine Brooks with suitcase in hand, trying desperately to cross 5th Street on his way to the Brewer Hotel.