Horizontal member on Hereford elevator adds civilizing touch for employees

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As we see in these photos from Hereford, Texas, a Tillotson elevator is more than just a collection of tanks and the mechanisms to move grain around inside the structure.

Texas-Okla Logo 04A Tillotson elevator can also come with amenities.

Here we see a lintel above the rear door of the main house. A lintel is a horizontal member that usually bears a load above an opening.

I asked Uncle Chuck Tillotson about it. (He’s also known in these posts as Charles J. Tillotson, son of Reginald Tillotson, of Tillotson Construction Co.)

He responded: “These concrete ‘eyebrows,’ or ‘headers,’ were added above doorways sometimes to provide a bit of shielding from the rainfall sheet flow coming down the vertical face of the wall over the doorway/opening in a rainstorm.”

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So it’s a thoughtful touch. An employee won’t get water down his neck when he opens the door. Think of the increased productivity!

“They were not poured integrally with the concrete bin wall during slipping but were added afterwards,” Uncle Chuck continued.

Not only is there the lintel but also the electric light. I saw the same combination over and over at the Tillotson elevators I visited in the Texas Panhandle and Oklahoma.

“I don’t recall these eyebrows being standard elements,” Uncle C. says. “I think they were added after the fact but whether Tillotson did the work, or the owner, I’m not sure.”

We do think the electric light was a standard item.

In the uppermost photo, the iron or steel hook and dangling cable remain a bit of a mystery, though.

And the rabbit-eared paintwork is beyond guessing.

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