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Curtis Woodworking Company Buildings

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Southwest corner 2nd St. S. and 12th Ave. S.

The brick two- and three-story factory buildings on this industrial site date from the late 1870s through the 1920s. The original small two-story office building is mildly Italianate; the buildings of the years 1910–1930 refer in passing to Beaux-Arts Classicism. The Curtis Company, along with Morgan Woodwork of Baltimore (founded in 1855), was one of America's principal suppliers of wood architectural parts, such as doors, windows, and cabinets. The company's products were most closely associated with the Colonial Revival. Curtis was started in 1866, and by the 1920s it had branches throughout the Midwest. It was one of the first producers of architectural parts to establish an extensive national advertising campaign, and it was also one of the first to engage nationally known architects to design its products. Among these architects were Russell Whitehead, Dwight James Baum, and the firm of Trowbridge and Ackerman. The company developed an ideal suburb, Castle Terrace, in Clinton. The company ceased production in 1966.

Writing Credits

Author: 
David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim

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