Samis Block was built in 1909 and demolished in 1974 when the Samis and adjacent buildings were demolished to prepare for the construction of the Municipal Building and parkade in 1985-86. Architect: Leo Dowler, who was later named resident architect for Alberta’s Department of Public Works. Original cost: $75,000. Construction materials: Solid masonry and iron frame construction, sandstone front, brick side and back walls. Original interior details: Five floors, elevator, two skylights over the central stairwell, wood trim, doors and floors. Original Owner: Adoniram Judson Samis.
The ground floor commercial space initially housed the Calgary Daily News and the Princess Theatre. On March 17, 1914 the Princess re-opened in a purpose built theatre constructed further west on the same block. The Samis Block’s commercial space was subsequently occupied by printing shops, harness and saddle makers and second hand shops. The upper floor offices were rented to lawyers, insurance companies, brokerage and real estate firms. After World War I it was primarily used for apartments. In 1912 David McDougall, trader, rancher, real estate broker and the son of Reverend George McDougall, built the David Block next door.