Warehouse No. Restaurant, situated at the foot of Olive Street, overlooks the picturesque Ouachita River which has been described by National Geographic Magazine as one of the ten most beautiful rivers in America.
This building, located in Monroe's historic district has witnessed almost 100 years of Monroe's 200 year old heritage. It has withstoodmany threats of high waters from floods and remains sound.
The corrugated tin exterior warehouse was used for storing heavy bales of cotton loaded from steamboats plying the Ouachita and other rivers from Camden, Arkansas to New Orleans, Louisiana. After the steamboat era gave way to the railroad era, it was used to store heavy wholesale groceries and hardware.
It is now supporting its lightest load - people.
During its restoration, the one principal guideline was to preserve the integrity of the building and to retain as many of the original features as possible. "Less is more" was the theme.
Old, original floors remain, exterior walls are the same and massive beams and supports are left exposed.
Many colorful names were suggested for the new restaurant. In keeping with the philosophy of retaining as much of the original character of the building as possible, the name decided upon was already over the entrance door - Warehouse No. 1, and the address - One Olive Street. Nothing in the sign was altered to make it a restaurant.
Other names used within the restaurant were suggested from the nature of the building and location.
Satin-smooth twigs found at the water's edge attested to the presence of beavers. Hence the name - Beaver Bar.
A mother wood duck hatched her young in a hollow tree at the water's edge directly below the building. Wood Duck Loft was so named in honor of being privileged to watch the nesting and the initial swim of the baby ducks.
The river and the steamboat era are perhaps the two most influential factors in the founding and growth of the city of Monroe. The river furnished the reason for the settlement of Monroe - originally known as Fort Miro. The name was changed from Fort Miro to Monroe in honor of the first steamboat to arrive - the James F. Monroe, on May 1, 1819.