Meskers are found in historic downtown commercial centers, on Main Streets all across America. The marketing materials indicated that they were intended predominantly for commercial structures; indeed erecting a new storefront or modernizing an older one were considered musts for any shopkeeper looking to attract and retain a clientele. Opera houses, banks and hotels are but few commonly encountered uses of Mesker facades throughout the nation. A significant number of facades were also purchased by various fraternal organizations—mostly the Freemasons and the Odd Fellows, but also Knights of Pythias and others. Occasionally, the products can be found in residential districts, typically in the form of iron fences and crestings, but also as window hoods or cornices. Later products such as windows or structural steel were used in a variety of building types including schools, offices, residential and industrial buildings. Since the materials were very adaptable to numerous uses, they can truly exist anywhere. Meskers can also be salvaged and found in locations and uses different from original.
The worldwide database in Google Earth contains all confirmed building locations as well as those advertised in catalogs; it is continually updated. Supplementing it are state-by-state listings of confirmed facades in Microsoft Excel spreadsheets, downloadable below. Information categories should be self-explanatory but a brief identification key is as follows:
MB = Mesker Brothers Iron Works; GLM = George L. Mesker & Co; both = elements from MB and GLM; JBM = J.B. Mesker & Son; 1903i = catalog insert; 1905T = testimonials catalog
Confirmed worldwide total: 5,858 buildings in 2,451 towns (updated June 2, 2023)
- Alabama – 58 buildings; 33 towns
- Alaska – 1 building
- Arizona – 45 buildings; 18 towns
- Arkansas – 120 buildings; 57 towns
- California – 26 buildings; 15 towns
- Colorado – 133 buildings; 50 towns
- Connecticut – 5 buildings; 4 towns
- Delaware – 3 buildings; 2 towns
- Florida – 45 buildings; 16 towns
- Georgia – 104 buildings; 57 towns
- Hawaii – 1 building
- Idaho – 22 buildings; 13 towns
- Illinois – 999 buildings; 351 towns
- Indiana – 673 buildings; 198 towns
- Iowa – 213 buildings; 106 towns
- Kansas – 226 buildings; 114 towns
- Kentucky – 322 buildings; 99 towns
- Louisiana – 45 buildings; 22 towns
- Maine – 12 buildings; 9 towns
- Maryland – 28 buildings; 18 towns
- Massachusetts – 10 buildings; 6 towns
- Michigan – 117 buildings; 55 towns
- Minnesota – 16 buildings; 13 towns
- Mississippi – 125 buildings; 52 towns
- Missouri – 480 buildings; 208 towns
- Montana – 47 buildings; 22 towns
- Nebraska – 64 buildings; 45 towns
- Nevada – 13 buildings; 5 towns
- New Hampshire – 6 buildings; 3 towns
- New Jersey – 6 buildings; 5 towns
- New Mexico – 114 buildings; 33 towns
- New York – 112 buildings; 71 towns
- North Carolina – 126 buildings; 52 towns
- North Dakota – 5 buildings; 5 towns
- Ohio – 153 buildings; 88 towns
- Oklahoma – 56 buildings; 38 towns
- Oregon – 27 buildings; 18 towns
- Pennsylvania – 151 buildings; 77 towns
- Rhode Island – 4 buildings; 4 towns
- South Carolina – 106 buildings; 49 towns
- South Dakota – 37 buildings; 27 towns
- Tennessee – 104 buildings; 54 towns
- Texas – 359 buildings; 115 towns
- Utah – 19 buildings; 13 towns
- Vermont – 5 buildings; 5 towns
- Virginia – 89 buildings; 36 towns
- Washington – 32 buildings; 16 towns
- Washington, D.C. – 2 buildings
- West Virginia – 102 buildings; 42 towns
- Wisconsin – 172 buildings; 83 towns
- Wyoming – 109 buildings; 21 towns
25 thoughts on “Where are Meskers?”
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I have just found some Mesker doorways and ceiling tile and Mesker Bros. markers in our Historic district of Sulphur, Oklahoma, may be a couple of other buildings, still checking the catalogs for confirming. Wonderful find.
Excellent! I don’t have anything listed for Sulphur so please send along addresses and images. If you are unsure about certain buildings, I’d be happy to help in identification.
Some time ago I took pictures of the Shelly Inch building in Placerville, CA, which I see is now on your list (409 Main St.). Would you like them anyway?
Sure. That would be great.
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Sorry to say that the Custer Building in Alton, Kansas, collapsed and has been removed. so need to take that one off your Kansas list.
That’s a shame. It will remain on the Kansas list, however; I’ll just update its status to ‘demolished.’ Thank you for the update.
My boyfriend and I found a Mesker in Craig, Missouri. It is located on Main Street and was not numbered. If you would like a photo please e-mail me.
That’s great! Yes, please send me a photo to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Sent email with photos
I know of a Meskers in Charleston, Missouri not in your database. How should i send the info to you?
Thanks for sending the info Jason! It will be added to the database in the near future.
Are you still actively adding Meskers to your list? If so, I spotted one in Waterford, PA that is not on your Pennsylvania list. Also, do you want a photo of the building or just the location? Are you interested in photos of details like medallions and capitals, etc, or just the overall building?
Secondly, I have recorded and photographed buildings by thirteen other metal front makers in Pennsylvania, Ohio and New York that are not on your list. Are you interested in them?
And finally, your Pennsylvania list shows a MB in West Newton at 121 E.Main Street. Across the street from that building is a building with metal colums that is marked “Mesker & Bro.”. Are you interested in that?
Yes, new Meskers are continuously being added to the list so I’m very interested in locations and photos. I would like info on the 13 other companies you found as well. If you would, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I was in Petoskey MI yesterday and saw a Mesker storefront at 312 E Lake St. You have 311 and 313 listed in your spreadsheet as demolished but not 312. The Mesker badge is at the lower left of the building,
It’s painted over but you can still make out the badge. It’s the Shorter and Sons store.
Hi Eric. Shorter & Sons is 311 E Lake Street, which I already have listed. 313 is the adjacent one-story building. Both are listed as surviving, not demolished (thankfully!). 312 is across the street but I don’t see any Meskers there. Thanks for your message and apologies for any confusion.
Does the company still exist? Where is it located?
Mesker Brothers Iron Works (later Co.) passed out of Mesker hands in the late 1960s but continued to operate under the Mesker name in St. Louis until the 1980s when it moved to Huntsville, Alabama, where, as Mesker Door, Inc., it manufactures steel doors and frames.
George L. Mesker & Co. (later renamed Mesker Steel), in turn, closed in 1981.
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Is it possible to get replacements for Meskers? We recently had a fire that destroyed part of a façade and the owners really want to replace and restore the store front.
I’m sorry to hear about the fire. In regards to replacement parts, it simply depends but “in stock” options are very limited. You can check out a few links at the bottom of this page https://meskerbrothers.wordpress.com/technical-information/ If you can e-mail me some details to email@example.com perhaps I’ll be able to help out more.
I have found a Mesker facade..has the name plate on it 713 West Main St.Charlottesville, VA Can send photos if wich
Thank you for the information! Photos would be great. Please forward to firstname.lastname@example.org