Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Wilkinson Lumber Company Drawings Online

The Ball State University Libraries Drawings + Documents Archive is pleased to announce the release of its latest digital collection, the Wilkinson Lumber Company Architectural Drawings. The collection contains 144 drawings made in the 1930s by the design service bureau of the Wilkinson Lumber Company. These drawings represent plans for 51 houses and one boat dock. Only one set of drawings is associated with an address; the others appear to be stock plans that customers could purchase to build their house. This practice was widespread among lumber companies; several offered similar services, and many continue the practice.

The Wilkinson Lumber Company was named for Indianapolis businessman Allen A. Wilkinson. Wilkinson attended a business college in Glens Falls, New York, as a teenager before moving to the Midwest with his parents. He started his business career in Muncie, Indiana, in 1882. Ten years later, he and his wife moved to Indianapolis, where he became secretary-treasurer of S. L. Greer Lumber Co., a business owned by his brother-in-law. Eventually, he gained an ownership interest in the business, which became Greer-Wilkinson and then, in 1906, the Allen A. Wilkinson Lumber Co.

Wilkinson eventually opened 36 branch locations and built a massive woodworking and joinery shop at 907 E. Michigan St. in Indianapolis, before his death in 1929. Anna Greer Wilkinson then assumed control of the business and ran it through the late 1930s. About 1946-47, the name of the firm was changed to Midland Building Industries. The building on Michigan St., then known as the Midland Building, remained actively used for lumber purposes into the 1970s. It was later turned into the Midland Antique Mall.

Images: Wilkinson Lumber Company plans 482, 441. Wilkinson Lumber Company Architectural Drawings, Drawings + Documents Archive, Archives and Special Collections, Ball State University Libraries.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

CAP Guest Lecture Series Recordings Online

The first 50 audio recordings in the College of Architecture and Planning Guest Lecture Series Recordings are now availble for research and discovery in the Ball State University Libraries’ Digital Media Repository. Listen to some of the very first speakers who came to our fledgling design school from 1966-73. You’ll see names you will likely recognize, such as Louis I. Kahn, Nathaniel Owings, Romaldo Giurgola, among other regional figures such as Ewing Miller and Evans Woollen. We are continuing to digitize the remainder of the collection and will send notices as those lectures are online. You can find all of the first installment at

Alphabetical list of guest lectures in the first installment of the collection:

Jeffrey Ellis Aronin
"Climate in architecture." January 8, 1968.

Edmund Bacon
"Planning, architecture, and politics." January 10, 1972.

Jacques Blumer
"Atelier 5." April 24, 1967.

Elliott Brenner
"Experimental architecture." April 24, 1967.

Samuel Brody
"Urban housing." January 15, 1973.

Grady Clay
"Staying ahead of the urban crowd." November 13, 1967.

Charles Counts
"American crafts." March 11, 1968.

George Danforth
"The work of Mies van Der Rohe." February 12, 1968.

Jeanne Davern
"The future of architecture." October 16, 1967.

Arthur Erickson
"The work of his firm." September 18, 1972.

Tom Everman
"Project and office management." SOM Lecture Series, September 17, 1973.

Albert Fein
"Frederick Law Olmstead and tradition." October 9, 1972.

Paul Friedberg
"Dynamics of open space." September 20, 1971.

William J. Geddis
"Recent work of TAC [The Architects' Collaborative, Inc.]." January 8, 1973.

Romaldo Giurgola
"Romaldo Giurgola: his private architectural practice." November 11, 1968.

Whitney Gordon
"International slums." October 3, 1966.
"Architecture in Middletown." January 15, 1968.

King Graf
"Campus planning." October 17, 1966.

A. J. H. M. Haak
"Dutch architecture." September 19, 1966.

George Hall
"Planning the Calumet River basin." October 2, 1967.

Edward T. Hall
"Proxemics--man's use of space." October 23, 1972.

John Hannaford
"A plan for Muncie and Anderson." February 13, 1967.

Harwell Harris
"Designing architecture in California and Texas." December 18, 1967.
"Greene and Greene architects." December 19, 1967.
"Louis Sullivan." December 19, 1967.

Charles Harris
"Organization and management of design firms." October 2, 1972.

Richard Howard
"Architectural graphics." September 25, 1967.

William Johnson
"Landscape architecture and the environment." January 13, 1969.

Louis I. Kahn
"Architecture." April 14, 1971.

Fazlur Khan
"Long span structures." SOM Lecture Series, September 24, 1973.
"The SOM office process: engineering and the computer." SOM Lecture Series, September 25, 1973.

Balthazar Korab
"The architect photographer." January 22, 1973.

Leslie Laskey
"Design education now." October 23, 1967.

Victor A. Lundy
"On architecture." October 30, 1972.

H. Roll McLaughlin
"Future for the past." January 22, 1968.

David Meeker
"James Associates, Inc.." October 9, 1967.

Ewing Miller and L. Wheeler
"Behavioral research for architectural planning." December 11, 1967.

Samuel V. Noe
"Strategic urban design." November 14, 1966.

Franz Oswald
"Le Corbusier's Carpenter Center, Harvard University." October 30, 1967.

Nathaniel Owings
"The spaces in between." SOM Lecture Series, September 10, 1973.

J. Norman Pease
"Charlotte/Mecklenburg Governmental Center." November 6, 1967.

Robert A. Peterson
"Brazilia." March 27, 1967.

Robert Propst
"Furniture exhibition opening." April 3, 1967.

Mildred Schmertz
"Russian architecture." 1973.

Jerome Sincoff
"National Air and Space Museum." September 25, 1972.

George M. Stephens Jr.
"Urban and regional planning." February 6, 1967.

Evans Woollen III
"Radiant city revisited." May 15, 1967.

Thomas K. Zung
"Concepts of architecture in the pyramids of Egypt and Mexico." December 4, 1967.

Images: Harry Weese with students, Jeanne Davern, and Duncan Stewart. CAP Images Collection, Drawings + Documents Archive, Archives and Special Collections, Ball State University Libraries.