Story and photos by Gary Rich
Farmers Co-op operates these elevators. The co-op is based in Gordon, Hay Springs, and Hemingford, Neb.
The elevator in the foreground was built by Mayer-Osborn Construction Company, based in Denver. The completion date is not known.
The elevator in the background was built by Chalmers and Borton Construction, based in Hutchinson, Kan., in 1958. The company built a second elevator, west of these elevators, as well as a couple of annexes.
By Kristen Cart
This stepped up headhouse design was first rolled out with the elevator in McCook, Neb., built in 1949 by Mayer-Osborn Construction Company. The style was featured in the Mayer-Osborn ad that ran in the early 1950s in the Farmers Elevator Guide.
The Gordon elevator showcased the rounded headhouse construction method adopted by Tillotson Construction for their later projects, but it is not known which company pioneered the cost saving technique.
From his home in Colorado, Gary Rich investigated this elevator on a trip east to photograph a number of Midwestern elevators. Gary has been instrumental in identifying a large number of Mayer-Osborn, Tillotson Construction, and J. H. Tillotson projects, pursuing the history of the elevators with as much passion as he puts into his excellent photography.
We are indebted to him for his relentless pursuit of good information, now contained in this blog.
- History is preserved in pictures at St. Francis, Kansas (ourgrandfathersgrainelevators.com)
- J. H. Tillotson’s project at Lodgepole, Neb., was the end of the line for Supt. Bill Morris (ourgrandfathersgrainelevators.com)