o find the oldest functioning elevators in Milwaukee, you go Downtown, to a short office tower at 808 N. Old World Third St. Its three ornate specimens with etched doors and wood paneling – Otis-brand lifts built along with the rest of the eight-story structure in 1925 – remain the only ones in the city to run with a live operator, an employee who’s more like an engineer than a mere attendant. Willie Dennis Lee (pictured) drives an elevator from dawn until late afternoon, then another operator takes his place.
‘Elevated’ appears in the January 2016 issue of Milwaukee Magazine.
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