In the early twentieth century, terracotta designs by architects proliferated in the pages of The Brickbuilder, a trade journal founded in Boston.
Notable published designs by New Orleans architects are included below. See if you can find them on buildings in the Crescent City and Opelousas.
Records of the Northwestern Terra Cotta Company are located at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C.
In 1906, the Ludowici Roofing Tile Company (also based in Chicago) established an office and warehouse in New Orleans due to the large amount of material that it was shipping to Panama. Ludowici's traveling sales representative J.D. Duffy was reassigned to the permanent position.(1) The bunglow community at Derby Place (Third Municipal District) utilized the company's tiles. Architect-clients included Walter Cook Keenan (1881-1970), who specified the tiles for the Jones Residence at 20 Neron Place (1923) and his apartment building at Carrollton Avenue and Green Street. Ludowici roofing was adopted for the Hugh L. White residence in Columbia, Mississippi and the Charles Ledet residence in Houma, Louisiana.(2)
The Southeastern Architectural Archive maintains a number of Ludowici catalogs, now digitized via the Internet Archive's Building Technology Heritage Library.
Other architectural terracotta suppliers who maintained a New Orleans presence include the following:
St. Louis Terra Cotta Co. (St. Louis), Frank Bethune, agent. 808 Perdido Street (1919).
Federal Terra Cotta Co. (New York), J.T. Mann & Company, agents. 909 Union Street (1919).
Atlantic Terra Cotta Co. (New York), Ole K. Olsen, agent. 822 Perdido Street (1920).
[See Building Review (1913-1922) for listings of local agents for various architectural trade concerns].
New Orleans structures with notable terracotta include:
Pere Marquette (817 Common Street) -- American Terra Cotta & Ceramic Company
Maison Blanche (901 Canal Street) -- Atlantic Terra Cotta Company
American Bank & Trust Company (200 Carondelet Street) -- Federal Terra Cotta Company
Louisiana Supreme Court building (400 Royal Street) -- Atlantic Terra Cotta Company
Lyons building (224 Camp Street) -- Northwestern Terra Cotta Company
Morris building (600 Canal Street) -- Northwestern Terra Cotta Company
Tulane building (211 Camp Street) -- Northwestern Terra Cotta Company
Grunewald Caterers (926-28 Canal Street) -- Northwestern Terra Cotta Company
(1)"Another Northern Firm Establishing Offices." The Times-Picayune 1 January 1906.
(2)"New Orleans Greatest Tile Center: Roofs May Rival Old World Cities." The Times-Picayune 23 May 1926.
Top four: Advertisements, The Daily Picayune. 23 July 1872; 30 March 1887; 19 September 1888; The Times-Picayune 1 September 1903.
Bottom seven: All from The Brickbuilder (1901-1910). Architects, from top to bottom: Andry & Bendernagel; Diboll, Owen & Goldstein; Favrot & Livaudais; Favrot & Livaudais; Toledano & Wogan; Toledano & Wogan; Toledano & Wogan.