Monday, July 21, 2008

It's All Concrete

One of several decorative concrete block designs.Few building materials are as "modern" as concrete. One of the most prominent uses for concrete in the Fifties and Sixties was decorative block. And chances are, if the building is in Tulsa, the decorative block came from Chandler Materials Company.

At one time they made nearly a dozen styles of shapely concrete blocks to suit the most demanding eye. Today Chandler primarily makes concrete drainage pipe and culverts.

The entrance to their plant on East 15th Street bears evidence to their more aesthetic past. Samples of each decorative concrete block make up their own section of a wall outside their entry gate. Walls and privacy screens made of these blocks are common in Tulsa neighborhoods such as Ranch Acres, Sungate, Lortondale, Patrick Henry and Park Plaza.

The entrance to Chandler Materials on 15th StreetSadly the plant no longer produces these unique designs. Only one decorative block is still in production- a rectangular design (third from right above) called the Sunray.
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Postscript.