Drawings for an elevator of 314,000-bushel capacity with bin plan and schedule

Records show that Tillotson Construction Co., of Omaha, built a few reinforced-concrete elevators with capacity of more than 300,000 bushels. The drawings posted here depict the outlines of a 314,000-bushel elevator with two legs.

The first was a twin-leg, 350,000-bushel job on an original plan at Farnsworth, Tex., in 1945.

Next–310,000 bushels, also on an original plan–came four years later, in 1949, at Dalhart, Texas.

1950: Canyon, Tex., and Bellwood, Neb., on a shared plan for 320,000 bushels. That same year, Rock Valley, Iowa, came close at 296,130 bushels. And the Vinton Street terminal, in Omaha, was completed at 382,880 bushels.

1951: Sunray, Tex. added a 550,000-bushel annex with 14 tanks (silos) of 20 feet in diameter. Hereford, Tex., welcomed a 300,000-bushel elevator on its own original plan, and York, Neb., did the same–also an original plan–with 336,000 bushels that same year.

1953: Cherokee, Okla. (original plan) 309,400 bushels; Ralston, Iowa (original plan) 537,500-bushel annex with eight tanks of 28 feet in diameter reaching to 115 feet in height; Estill, S.C. (original plan) with 10 tanks of 18 feet in diameter reaching to 120 feet. (The year earlier, Tillotson had built 225,000 bushels of storage at Estill.)

1954: Orienta, Okla. (original plan) 312,000 bushels with 10 tanks of 20 feet in diameter towering 114 feet nine inches; Bellwood, Neb. (original plan) 340,000 bushels with 10 tanks of 20 feet in diameter and 130 feet in height; Iowa Falls, Iowa (Bellwood plan) 321,000 bushels of 122 feet (no other information is included in the records); Glidden, Iowa annex of 331,000 bushels (incomplete entry); Ensign, Kan. annex (original plan) 319,830 bushels with 11 tanks of 19 feet in diameter and 118 feet in height.

Tillotson built no elevators of such great capacity in 1955, the year our records end.

Drawings for an elevator of 300,000- to 354,000-bushel capacity with bin plan and schedule

Records show that Tillotson Construction Co., of Omaha, built a few reinforced-concrete elevators with capacity of more than 300,000 bushels. The drawings posted here depict the outlines of a 314,000-bushel elevator with two legs.

The first was a twin-leg, 350,000-bushel job on an original plan at Farnsworth, Tex., in 1945.

Next–310,000 bushels, also on an original plan–came four years later, in 1949, at Dalhart, Texas.

1950: Canyon, Tex., and Bellwood, Neb., on a shared plan for 320,000 bushels. That same year, Rock Valley, Iowa, came close at 296,130 bushels. And the Vinton Street terminal, in Omaha, was completed at 382,880 bushels.

1951: Sunray, Tex. added a 550,000-bushel annex with 14 tanks (silos) of 20 feet in diameter. Hereford, Tex., welcomed a 300,000-bushel elevator on its own original plan, and York, Neb., did the same–also an original plan–with 336,000 bushels that same year.

1953: Cherokee, Okla. (original plan) 309,400 bushels; Ralston, Iowa (original plan) 537,500-bushel annex with eight tanks of 28 feet in diameter reaching to 115 feet in height; Estill, S.C. (original plan) with 10 tanks of 18 feet in diameter reaching to 120 feet. (The year earlier, Tillotson had built 225,000 bushels of storage at Estill.)

1954: Orienta, Okla. (original plan) 312,000 bushels with 10 tanks of 20 feet in diameter towering 114 feet nine inches; Bellwood, Neb. (original plan) 340,000 bushels with 10 tanks of 20 feet in diameter and 130 feet in height; Iowa Falls, Iowa (Bellwood plan) 321,000 bushels of 122 feet (no other information is included in the records); Glidden, Iowa annex of 331,000 bushels (incomplete entry); Ensign, Kan. annex (original plan) 319,830 bushels with 11 tanks of 19 feet in diameter and 118 feet in height.

Tillotson built no elevators of such great capacity in 1955, the year our records end.

Drawings for an elevator of 50,000- to 100,000-bushel capacity with bin plan and schedule

“Sorry these are printed with margin on wrong end,” write Uncle Tim Tillotson after copying the elevator plans in his possession.

“Was busy unfolding and folding the old originals for the [printshop] guy because he tore the first print I handed him (on fold line) just unfolding it. They came out of printer 3 feet long. Didn’t realize Boo-Boo till I got home. Too much $ to re-do!”

Nevertheless, we benefit from Uncle Tim’s efforts and from our cropping tool, which lead to this series of posts with all plans from that printing session.

Specifications from Alta, Iowa and drawings of a likely model for that elevator

In response to a reader’s question, we are posting some basic specifications of the Alta, Iowa, elevator that Tillotson Construction Co. built in 1950. (Plans alter between “Tillotson Contracting Co.” and “Tillotson Construction Co.”

The drawings seen above are Tillotson’s standard plan for a 250,000-bushel elevator with eight tanks (silos).

Capacity at Alta was 246,070 bushels. The eight tanks of 18 feet in diameter sat on a main slab of 60.0 by 73.5 feet. The driveway was 13 x 15 feet.

The walls of the tanks rose 115 feet from the slab, and they were topped by the cupola measuring 23.0 feet wide, 61.5 feet long, and 39 feet high. That brought the structure up to 154 feet–quite imposing.

What were a timekeeper’s duties on a grain elevator construction project?

By Charles J. Tillotson

Editor’s note: The previous post about Charles Hauber, an employee of Tillotson Construction Co. in the mid-1950s, raises a question: What were a timekeeper’s duties on a grain elevator construction project?

The timekeeper’s duties were often directly proportionate to the project size. On small projects the timekeeper’s duties were performed by the job superintendent. If the size of the job warranted a full-time person, his duties would require him to daily monitor the laborers on the job and their hourly rate of pay, either by requiring each individual laborer to personally check in with him in the morning, thereby “starting the clock” for the labor to be performed for that day.

On larger projects with a given steady number of workmen on the job with constant types of duties being performed each day where personal check-in would take up too much time, the timekeeper would merely check out each laborer’s hours, task, and hourly rate for each workman via personal observation and contact throughout the day.

The timekeeper was also responsible for recording the hours worked by the on-site administration and supervision personnel, but usually the pay rate for these people, including himself, would be held confidential.

In any regard, no matter the job size, the responsibility of the timekeeper was to accrue, on a daily basis the name of each laborer, his hours worked, his job and his rate of pay. This daily tabulation for all labor and supervision personnel would then be transmitted to the accounting department in the Tillotson Construction Co.’s home office in Omaha.

The Accounting Department would then convert this information into the individual payroll checks to be issued to each workman. This was usually on a weekly basis. In many cases, where the job was in a remote area and there wasn’t enough time to transmit the payroll physically, the payroll checks were written on the job site by the timekeeper after receiving the amount of each check via the telephone from the Accounting Department.

The timekeeper’s job was a very important position requiring a person of integrity, honesty, and dependability–for without those key characteristics the possibility of achieving a successful and profitable project couldn’t be accomplished.

The Des Moines Tribune profiled Tillotson Construction Co. timekeeper Charles Hauber in 1955

By Herb Owens

DALLAS CENTER, IA–Charles Hauber, 21, timekeeper on a grain elevator construction project here, is living proof that “a weak chin” is not visual evidence of a lack of determination.

Seven years ago Hauber’s lower jaw suffered a major injury in an auto accident. A nerve was severed and, as a result, the natural growth and development of his chin was retarded.

Two years ago, Hauger spent a month at University Hospitals in Iowa City, where physicians and surgeons estimated his possibilities fro reconstruction of his lower jaw and chin.

By using bone from his hip, surgeons are hopeful that they can build a normal mandible for Hauber. Through use of cartilage, the youth’s chin would be rebuilt to normal appearance.

Long self-conscious about his receding chin, Hauber developed a plan for accomplishment of normal features. He left Loras College in Dubuque, where he had been enrolled two years studying for Catholic priesthood, to build a bank account for the surgery.

Studies Languages

Surgeons have assured Hauber that a series of operations would be necessary. The surgery will be expensive. When Charles has saved $1,000, he’ll submit himslef for the initial work. The accumulation of savings is slow–but Hauber already has more than $400 in the bank.

Hauber is a most unusual construction timekeeper. He has had three years of Greek and four years of Latin. He has had three years of German and a year of French. He even has had six months of Spanish.

Besides his interest in languages, Hauber is an enthusiastic amateur short story writer. He has written several stories–without ever submitting any to editors for professional judgment. And, as a student of people and human nature, he’s constantly alert for character studies and incidents he can incorporate in fiction writing.

Worked on Elevators

Eldest of six children of Mr. and Mrs. Carl Hauber of Emmetsburg, Charles–known to co-workers as “Chuck”–for two years attended a Catholic seminary at East Troy, Wis., a school conducted by the Society of Divine Word. He also had a year at Epworth College, near Dubuque.

When Hauber first was employed by the Tillotson Construction Co. of Omaha, he worked on an elevator project at Bancroft. Then the crew shifted to the Farmer’s Elevator Co. at Ralston. After a “repair job” at Aurora, Neb., he was assigned to the elevator construction project at Boxholm.

Here the Tillotson company is building the $151,000 addition on the Farmer’s Co-Operative Co. elevator.

Hauber likes his work–but his dreams go beyond a career in construction business. Whether he’ll return to studies for the priesthood, he hasn’t determined. His interest in languages–which he continues to study after working hours–has kindled thoughts of becoming an interpreter. Possibilities as a writer are not overlooked.

Whatever he heads for, be assured Hauber will give it the old college try–and he hopes to have “a determined chin” to show with it.

An Iowa company built an elevator in Ceresco, Neb., imitating Tillotson’s style

For a small eastern Nebraska town, Ceresco is well-known within its region because of a furniture store, Ernie’s in Ceresco, that advertises widely.

When Kate Oshima visited Ernie’s to look for bargains, she happened to notice a handsome grain elevator with a curved headhouse.

At first we wondered if this was an unrecorded project by Tillotson Construction Co.

But Kate got a photo of a manhole cover that tells otherwise: Grain Storage Construction Co., of Council Bluffs, Iowa, takes credit for the 1959 job.

We find no background information on this company.

But the curved headhouse makes us wonder if Tillotson design talent migrated across the Missouri River to Omaha’s twin city and worked there.

Tillotson’s construction record ends at 1955. From the accompanying photos taken by Kate, this elevator’s style sure looks familiar.

 

Tillotson family’s 1930s Omaha home at 624 N. 41 St is revealed

By Charles J. Tillotson

“My oh my! The old house is still standing after all these years, which is at least 89 years.

“This is my Grandpa and Grandma’s (Charles H. and Rose A. Brennan Tillotson’s) home and where Dad and Mom (Reginald O. and Margaret I. Tillotson) lived intermittently for three years after they got married.

“I was born in 1935 in Creighton [University]’s St. Joseph Hospital and lived here for my first three years when Dad wasn’t on a construction site too far to come home. Dad built a small house-trailer so that he could take Mom and his kids along with him when going away. 

“When Dad finally decided to settle down three years later [after the death of Charles J. and formation of Tillotson Construction Co. with brother Joe], he bought a house with a fruit orchard located on the northern outskirts of Omaha. 

“I have a bunch of photos of the house while I was standing in front of it with my winter togs on, and of course it was painted white at that time.” 

In 1940, Bernard Blubaugh prepared the Clyde Co-op’s Medford, Okla., location for a concrete elevator

The Clyde (Okla.) Co-operative Association filed its 21st-annual report in 1940 and listed Bernard Blubaugh (seen above) as general manager of its Medford operation.

The report named the nine directors:

L.E. Melka, President

B.F. Cline, Vice president

Otto Zeman, Secretary

C.E. Clark, Mike Hein, E.J. Best, J.R. Skalnik, C.S. Shellhammer, and Louis Droselmeyer, directors

Stogie in hand, Bernard Blubaugh walks an elevator site. Photos courtesy of the Blubaugh Archive.

Employees were O.L. Sturtz, local manager, Clyde; Phil Kenny, local manager, Renfrow; Lewis Dahlen, local manager, Deer Creek; E.L. Hampton, local manager, Nardin; Gary Cassingham, local manager, Salt Fork; Evelyn Dillon, bookkeeper, Medford; Elmer Huffman, elevator, Medford; Robert Wharry, gasoline and oil, Medford; Carl Dahlen, gasoline and oil, Clyde; Irvin Dester, gasoline and oil, Deer Creek.

Another co-op record shows that Tillotson Construction Co., of Omaha, was already familiar with the co-op. On March 11, 1936, the company was awarded the contract to build an elevator at Clyde. This would have been a wooden elevator: their first concrete elevator was in 1939 at Goltry.

The bid was $10,950. Two weeks later the company came back to the co-op board with a request.

“Tillotson ask if we would reconsider as he had left out $3,335 labor bill,” the record says. “Board did reconsider.”

And Tillotson went on to do additional, significant work for the Clyde Co-op, building the 212,000-bushel elevator of reinforced concrete at Medford in 1941. Presumably, the bid included labor costs on that one.

 

In 1941, Mrs. A.L. Luty managed an elevator complex in Kiowa, Kan.

An item passed along to Our Grandfathers’ Grain Elevators makes us wonder if we may have found the first woman to manage an elevator.

“With a new 100,000-bushel, fire-resistive elevator now in operation, in addition to an older plant which adjoins it, Mrs. A. L. Luty goes about her managerial duties with renewed effort. Pictured at her desk in the new elevator of the O.K. Cooperative Grain & Mercantile Co., at Kiowa, Kansas, Mrs. Luty maps operations for the heavy run of grain which the plant will handle this summer. At the right is the new elevator. Antirfriction bearings throughout; standard electric power, including surge protection; modern dust control equipment and lighting protections–a splendid example of construction and engineering.”

Note: This is not a claim that Mayer-Osborn or Tillotson built the elevator at Kiowa.

Source: Bernard Blubaugh Notebook