At least 2,000 communities in North America have or had Mesker facades. How’s that for impact?
It took nearly six years to discover and document the last 1,000 communities, but the latest with at least one confirmed (extant or extinct) Mesker is Tuscumbia, AL. The brick front at 116 S. Main St, featuring cast iron storefront columns, and galvanized iron window hoods and cornice by George L. Mesker & Co. of Evansville, Indiana, is the 4,855th identified Mesker. Thank you to Roger Waguespack for the ID and the photos. And thanks to all who have contributed to this ongoing effort over the last decade.
Of the 2,000 towns (complete listing of towns can be found in state-by-state databases here):
- 1,016 have facades by Mesker Brothers Iron Works (MB)
- 661 have facades by George L. Mesker & Co. (GLM)
- 323 have facades by both companies
- The most Mesker towns can be found in Illinois (330), Indiana (175), Missouri (171), Texas (103), and Kansas (95)
- State with most MB-only towns is Illinois (144)
- State with most GLM-only towns is Indiana (112)
- State with most both-Mesker towns is Illinois (88)
- Top towns with surviving Meskers are Evansville, IN (27); Henderson, KY (26); North Vernon, IN (24); Boonville, IN (21); and Linton, IN (18). For an older list/ranking see here.
As impressive as 2,000 may sound, it doesn’t end here. There are more towns out there to be rediscovered. Meskers desired to “have [our] complete House Fronts introduced into every town and city in the United States and Territories” and we will eventually find out how close they came to achieving that goal.