Thursday, October 4, 2012

Lexicon: Bodine

We encountered a new building term yesterday in a trade catalog titled The Complete House Builder (1890). Bodine was a patented roofing product developed by the Bodine Roofing Company of Mansfield, Ohio in the early 1880s. Comprised of polychromed white poplar and spruce wood pulp, bodine's advantage over slate was its affordability and the ease with which any DIYer could install it. For the "Cheap Cottage Set on Posts" illustrated above, it was one option that the M.A. Donohue & Company considered economical. An added benefit for those with rain barrels and cisterns was its inconspicuous flavor. The Architect, Builder and Woodworker reported that rain water flowing off a bodine roof imparted "no unpleasant taste," unlike that experienced with composition roofs (gravel, pitch, chemical, asbestos or felt).(1)

(1)"The Bodine Patent Roof," The Architect, Builder and Woodworker 19 (October 1883): p. 188.

Image above: "No. 1--Front Elevation," The Complete House Builder with Hints on Building (Chicago: M.A. Donohue & Company, 407-429 Dearborn Street, 9 April 1890), n.p. Southeastern Architectural Archive, Special Collections Division, Tulane University Libraries.

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