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Grand Rapids in 1856

Scene of early Grand Rapids viewed from the...

Alabastine Company

Alabastine Company


The illustration depicts the Alabastine Co. as a series of attached single-story buildings, with the exception of the one on the far right which is two stories. A detached building stands at the left. Smokestacks at the center portion of the factory are belching smoke, a positive symbol of growing industry at that time. The Grand River is visible in the background.


Full Details

TitleAlabastine Company

Image from Grand Rapids, 1891, a publication by the Kent Furniture Company. 

From Albert Baxter's History of the City of Grand Rapids, "The Alabastine Company was organized in New York in 1879 by Melvin B. Church, its present manager. Alabastine is an article of which calcined gypsum is the base, made to take the place of calcimine in wall coatings and finish."

The 1891 City Directory lists Melvin B. Church as General Manager of the Anti-Kalsomine Co. and Church Plastico Co. & Stock Farm. The Alabastine Co. manufactures alabastine (gypsum), land plaster, and Church's Potato Bug Poison. In the 1895 City Directory Melvin B. Church is President of the Alabastine Co. and General Manager of the Anti-Kalsomine Co. The Alabastine Mills were on the north side of Grandville Ave., west of the toll gate; until recently the Alabastine mines were open for tours. 

Location In PhotoGrandville MI
CollectionAndrew A. Davis

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