Source material

The Mesker companies were equal parts contributors and benefactors of the Industrial Revolution. The pendulum may have swung more towards the former, but it must nonetheless be acknowledged that the companies relied on raw materials and distribution systems established by others in order to fashion and sell their products. Without the raw materials—wood, several kinds … Continue reading

Pennsylvania now with over 100 known Meskers

Over recent weeks there has been a steady influx of newly discovered and documented buildings with Mesker components in Pennsylvania, such that it has been impossible to post this customary celebration in the category of “states with at least 100 Meskers.” At least until the new discoveries have been cataloged. Things seem to have leveled … Continue reading

100 Meskers found in Tennessee

Tennessee is the latest state where we’ve identified at least 100 buildings with Mesker building products. Below is a brief summary of Meskers’ historic output in the state and a look at the 100 buildings found to date. Historically, Mesker companies sold a significant number of building facades and related products in Tennessee, the state … Continue reading

Lethal Mesker

Over 1,000 buildings with Mesker building components ceased to be for a myriad of reasons including fires, tornadoes, urban renewal, neglect, stupid men, or their combination. However, only one Mesker’s demise was planned to be a spectacular visual effect immortalized on the silver screen. Orlando’s third City Hall (but first built for this purpose) was … Continue reading

South Carolina’s 101 Mesker fronts

When we document at least 100 buildings with Mesker building products in a state, we celebrate it here. It’s a chance to provide some historic statistics and to acknowledge good Mesker examples that might otherwise go unrecognized. The latest to join the 100+ club (now 18 states in total) is South Carolina with 101 Meskers. … Continue reading

The Largest and Most Complete Establishment

It is the principal of marketing to extol one’s virtues, including a healthy amount of exaggeration, therefore it should come as no surprise that the Mesker companies touted their products as the most modern and affordable solutions for commercial building facades on the market. It also stands to reason that such remarkable goods had to … Continue reading

Drop ornament story

A simple and diminutive floral motif by Mesker Brothers Iron Works—referred to only as “ornament no. 800” in Ben’s Bible—is less decorative than most of its brethren, but proved to be more versatile. Majority of Mesker motifs, and classically inspired motifs in general, are either bilaterally symmetrical (mirrored on a central axis) or radially symmetrical … Continue reading

5,000th Mesker!

Mesker #2,000 came in December, 2011, #3,000 in June, 2013, and #4,000 in June, 2015. Three years later and fourteen years since the launch of the ‘got mesker?’ initiative through the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency (now the Illinois State Historic Preservation Office in the Department of Natural Resources), the 5,000th building with Mesker-manufactured components has … Continue reading

The Heart of It All (or at least 129 Meskers)

The 100-Mesker club has a new member—Ohio. Perhaps not so new, as the 100 mark was reached some time ago, but additional Ohio discoveries just kept coming, preventing this write up from appearing sooner. Historically, Ohioans purchased a not insignificant amount of Mesker products, ranking 13th nationwide with a combined estimate of approximately 1,230 facades. … Continue reading

Wrought iron sash originators

To meet growing customer demand for fire-retardant products, in the early 1900s Mesker Brothers Iron Works began to offer fireproof hollow metal windows. In the early 1910s, the product line was extended to include solid section steel industrial sash and casements although the windows remained a minor component among a myriad of still primarily galvanized … Continue reading