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…Okay, a Lot More!

I was so pleased to add that one entry to the FBG Construction Projects list... and then I set out to dump my research files into a separate wiki. My intention was to enable public access, provide a basis for further research, and, well, just sort of get the darned thing off my virtual desk.

But of course I had to check a few details, and look up one more thing, and what should have been two or three days of putting data in wiki folders turned into six weeks of long days as the new research dragged me to deeper and deeper levels.

I won't recount the work blow by blow; I simply point you to the new addition here, the FBG Project Wiki. It contains — ready? — 100 entries for known construction projects by Frank B. Gilbreth.

A hundred. That's up from about 94, even with the recently added one, and after removing two (one was an inadvertent duplicate, and the other went into a catchall entry for unverified projects). So in just following up, I found six or seven completely new, previously-forgotten projects out there... and a couple of them are doozies.

I also found more information on some of the projects for which I'd only found sketchy material. All it takes is finding one key clue, and then the search is easy.

I think I have now found at least a hint of every FBG project; at least, I'd be surprised if anything turns up that's as much of a surprise as some of these new ones were. Part of that is in that catchall entry, number 000, which contains eight “maybe” or “potential” projects. Each one has at least one piece of evidence, usually a trade job notice or call for workers that I can't match in time or location to any known project. At least one of them might be a substantial facility Frank Gilbreth built for his own purposes... I'm running down more information on that one.

In any case, if you have any remaining doubt that Frank Bunker Gilbreth Sr was a significant man of his day, and would be remembered even if he'd never had twelve (or so) children or become one of the founding titans of efficiency engineering, a look through this list of important US (and Canadian) construction projects will convince you.

It's fascinating stuff, and I consider every minute of a very long research process worthwhile in having restored this segment of history to public knowledge.

Run take a look!