McMechen Lockmaster Houses on the Ohio River

OMB No.
NPS Form 10-900
(Rev.
1024-0018
8-86)
United States Department o f the Interior National Park Service
N A T I O N A L R E G I S T E R OF H I S T O R I C PLACES R E G I S T R A T I O N F O R M
other name/site number: OHIO RIVER LOCK & D A M
#
13
not for pub1 ication:
vicinity: N/A
city/town: McMechen
state: W V
county: Marshall
code: 051
zip code: 26040
Category of Property: BUILDING
Number o f Resources within Property:
Contributing
Noncontributing
1
1
buildings
sites
structures
objects
Total
Number of contributing resources previously listed in the National
0
Register:
Name of related property listing: N/A
the designated authority under the National Historic Preservation Act
o f 1986, a s amended, I hereby certify that this
- nomination
- request for determination of eligibility
meets the documentation standards for registering praperties in the
National Register of Historic Places and meets the procedural and
professional requirements set forth in 36 CFR Part 60. In my opinion,
the property
meets
- does not meet
S e e continuation sheet.
As
Dat
opinion, the property
- meets
- does not meet
the National Register criteria.
In
my
- See continuation sheet.
entered in the National Register
- S e e continuation sheet.
determined eligible for the
National Register
- See continuation sheet.
determined not eligible for the
Nat ions1 Register
removed from the National Register
other (explain):
6. Function or Use
.........................................................................
Historic: Transportation
Domest ic
Sub:
Current
Sub: Single Dwelling
:
Domestic
Water-related
Single Dwelling
Other Description:
Materials: foundation CONCRETE
walls
BRICK/STUCCO
roof CERAMIC TILE
other WOOD
Describe present and historic physical appearance.
sheet.
See continuation
8. Statement of Significance
Certifying official has considered
relation to other properties:
significance of this property in
Applicable National Register Criteria: &
Criteria Considerations (Exceptions)
:
N/A
Areas o f Significance: TRANSPORTATION
MARITIME HISTORY
Period(s) of Significance: 1905-1939
Significant Dates:
1910
Significant Person(s) : N/A
Cultural Affiliation: N/A
Architect/Builder: UNKNOWN
State significance of property, and justify criteria,
considerations, and areas and periods of significance noted above.
X
S e e continuation sheet.
-
9. Major Bib1 iographical References
S e e continuation sheet.
Previous documentation on file ( N P S ) :
preliminary determination o f individual listing ( 3 6 CFR 6 7 ) has been
requested.
previously listed in the National Register
previously determined eligible by the National Register
designated a National Historic Landmark
#
recorded by Historic American Buildings Survey
recorded by Historic American Engineering Record #
Primary Location o f Additional Data:
State historic preservation office
Other state agency
Federal agency
Local government
University
Other -- Specify Repository:
UTM References: Zone Easting Northing
17
-,
Zone Easting Northing
5 & ! 6 7 5 4426382
- .. L.75 1:; -- - --;
X
See continuation
Verbal Boundary Description:
sheet.
Beginning at the point of intersection of the boundary line between
the Ohio River Railway (now C S X ) property and the property line to the
north thence South 1" 31' East 2 5 0 . 0 6 feet; thence North 87'" 8' East
1 7 4 . 9 f e e t ; thence North 2'> 52' West 250 feet; thence South 87'"West
Boundary Justification:
-
See continuation sheet.
T h e property within these boundaries is historically associated with the
site, known a s U.S. Engineers Corps Ohio River Lock and Dam #13.
11.
Form Prepared By
Name/Title: Katherine W .
Organization:
WV SHPO-NRO
Street 8 Number:
City or Town:
Jourdan
1528 Market Street
Wheelinq
Date:
3 Auqust
Telephone:
State:
1992
(304) 238-1300
ZIP: 2 6 0 0 3
(NPS F o r m
i0-900)
U n i t e d S t a t e s D e p a r t m e n t o f the I n t e r i o r
National Park Service
N A T I O N A L REGISTER O F HISTORIC PLACES
C O N T I N U A T I O N SHEET
M C M E C H E N LOCKMASTER H O U S E S O N T H E O H I O R I V E R
S e c t i o n Number
7
Pase 2
T h e t w o l o c k m a s t e r h o u s e s i n McMechen a r e t h e remaining e x a m p l e s a t L o c k
and D a m #13 o f t h e e a r l y t w e n t i e t h c e n t u r y e f f o r t s a t c a n a l i z a t i o n o f t h e
Ohio R i v e r .
T h e minimum b u i l d i n g p l a n s f o r e a c h s i t e o f t h e 1 9 2 9 L o c k &
D a m S y s t e m o n t h e Ohio R i v e r i n c l u d e d a s i n g l e 110 x 5 0 0 ' l o c k , a w i c k e t
d a m , p o w e r h o u s e t o o p e n t h e l o c k d o o r s , a n d a t l e a s t two r e s i d e n c e s .
C o n s t r u c t e d by t h e Corps o f E n g i n e e r s i n 1910, t h e Tudor R e v i v a l homes
This
h o u s e d t h e l o c k m a s t e r ' s f a m i l y , a s w e l l as t h a t o f t h e e n g i n e e r .
same h o u s e p l a n w a s r e p e a t e d a t s i x o t h e r known s i t e s a l o n g t h e O h i o
River.
l o c a t e d on t h e w e s t s i d e o f t h e s t r e e t , numbers 623-625
They a r e r e a c h e d by a f l i g h t o f c o n c r s t e
G r a n t , below t h e street l e v e l .
s t e p s t h a t p a r a l l e l a c o n c r e t e and t i m b e r r e t a i n i n g w a l l r u n n i n g a g a i n s t
the sidewalk.
The homes rest s i d e by s i d e o n t h e t o p o f a t e r r a c e d y a r d .
A s i d e w a l k p a r a l l e l s t h e w a l l and r u n s b e t w e e n t h e homes and a c r o s s t h e
f r o n t of t h e f a c a d e s .
S t e p s l e a d from t h e c e n t e r walk t o t h e lower
terrace w i t h t h e walk c o n t i n u i n g s t r a i g h t t o w a r d s t h e Ohio R i v e r u n t i l i t
r e a c h e s t h e a c c e s s road t h a t r u n s along t h e bank.
The walk h a s t h r e e
trees l i n i n g i t s l e n g t h on t h e l o w e r t e r r a c e and t h e r e a r e t h r e e m a p l e
t r e e s o n t h e w e s t s i d e o f 625 G r a n t a t t h e t o p o f t h e t e r r a c e .
A
c o n t r i b u t i n g g a r a g e i s l o c a t e d d i r e c t l y o f f G r a n t S t r e e t s o u t h o f t h e 625
house.
The lower t e r r a c e is p r e s e n t l y b e i n g u s e d a s a s m a l l c i t y p a r k and
t h e r e is a wooden n o n c o n t r i b u t i n g p i c n i c s h e l t e r i n t h e c e n t e r o f t h e
lawn.
I n t h e s o u t h w e s t c o r n e r o f t h e p r o p e r t y is a b a s k e t b a l l c o u r t w i t h
a c o n c r e t e s l a b a n d a m e t a l c h a i n f e n c e o n two s i d e s .
The homes a r e
S i n c e t h e two h o m e s
The f o l l o w i n g is a d e s c r i p t i o n o f 5 2 5 G r a n t S t r e e t .
a r e m i r r o r i m a g e s t h e same d e s c r i p t i o n a p p l i e s i n r e v e r s e o r d e r t o 6 2 3
T h e h o m e s a r e T u d o r R e v i v a l i n s t y l e b e i n g two a n d a h a l f
Grant Street.
s t o r i e s i n h e i g h t , with a lower l e v e l , and having f o u r f r o n t bays.
The
f i r s t f l o o r is r e d b r i c k w i t h a n a g g r e g a t e s t u c c o o n t h e s e c o n d f l o o r
h a v i n g v e r t i c a l wood h a l f - t i m b e r i n g w h i c h i s a n g l e d i n t h e g a b l e e n d s .
The f r o n t o r w e s t f a c a d e h a s a n open porch t o t h e r i g h t s i d e with b r i c k
p i e r s and r a i l i n g .
A window f a c e s w e s t o f f t h e p o r c h a n d t h e e n t r a n c e
f a c e s s o u t h w i t h t h e o r i g i n a l wood d o o r h a v i n g 9 s m a l l s q u a r e l i g h t s i n
t h e u p p e r s e c t l o n and t h r e e r e c t a n g u l a r p a n e l s b e l o w .
The s c r e e n d o o r is
also original.
A l s o o n t h e f i r s t f l o o r a r z p a i r e d n a r r o w windows,' w i t h
two s i n g l e windows t o t h e f a r l e f t .
A l l t h e window o p e n i n g s o n t h e h o u s e
are 9 / i double-hung with t h e f i r s t f l o o r having c o n c r e t e l i n t e l s and
sills.
T h e s e c o n d f l o o r h a s two g a b l e e n d s o v e r t h e l e f t s i d e o f h o u s e
w i t h p a i r e d windows on t h e s e c o n d f l o o r and d e c o r a t i v e t i m b e r i n g i n t h e
gable ends.
To t h e r i g h t e n d o f t h e h o u s e t h e g a b l e r o o f i s v i s i b l e .
The
The
red c l a y t i l e roof has a square pattern with f i n i a l s at the peaks.
l o w e r l e v e l h a s two f r o n t o p e n i n g s w i t h b l i g h t w i n d o w s .
The s o u t h f a c a d e h a s t h e f r o n t porch t o t h e left with t h e door f a c i n g
A s i n g l e window is t o t h e r i g h t .
On t h e s e c o n d f l o o r i s v e r t i c a l
south.
half timbering with three openings.
T h e c e n t e r window is l a r g e w i t h a
(NPS Form 10-900)
United States Department o f the Interior
National Park Service
NfiTIONAL REGISTER OF HISTORIC PLACES
CONTINUATION SHEET
M C M E C H E N L O C K M A S T E R HOUSES ON T H E O H I O R I V E R
7
Paqe 3
Section Number
smaller flanking window to each side having 4/1 lights. The gable end has
the roof sloping to the first floor line on the left.
In the gable peak
is angled half-timbering with a 6 light opening. The basement has one 6
light window.
The east or rear facade has a center shed porch on the first floor with
square balusters on the wood railing, and narrow vertical wood siding
under the side eaves. The door off the porch has a large light opening
and smaller windows to each side. A! large single window is to the far
left.
The second floor has a single short but wide 8/1 double-hung
opening and to the far right paired double-hung windows with 4 / 1 - l i g h t s .
There is a large window under the gable end with vertical half-timbering
and a narrow eave. To the right side of the porch are winding concrete
steps leading to the basement door which is under the porch. The lower
level has a 6 light window at each end of the house.
The north facade of the home has a window at eaih end of the first floor
and a center exposed chimney wikh corbelled recessed panels decorating the
side. The second floor also has a window to each side of the chimney.
There is a small narrow window in the gable end, and there is one 6 light
basement window to the far left.
The interiors of the homes have hardwood floors with the fireplaces often
being in a diagonal corner. These openings have narrow rectangular
ceramic tile in a variety of colors. The staircase is open with spindled
railings. The front door opens into the large entry hall and staircase.
The living area is directly oppcsite the front door with the kitchen in
the r e a r , and another room to the rear of the entry. The stairs lead
upstairs to the landing with the bath immediately to the side. There are
four bedrooms of various sizes opening off the hall.
The contributing garage is one story with a lower level and is sited
directly off the sidewalk of Grant Street. The garage has vertical board
and batten siding with a rolled asphalt shed roof. The building has two
bays for cars with narrow vertical siding on the double swinging doors.
The only exposed window has 12 lights and is o n the north side o f the
building.
The other windows are boarded over but there are openings o n
the south side. and two on each level of the west facade.
The two lockmaster homes and garage are in original condition with the
building fabric intact. They are the only surviving components o f the
complex at Lock & Dam # 1 3 .
They are well sited on a terrace above the
flood plain near the river bank. The buildings interpret the early period
of canalization of the Ohio River.
(NPS Form 10-900)
United States Department o f the Interior
National Park Service
NOTIONAL REGISTER OF HISTORIC PLACES
CONTINUATION SHEET
MCMECHEN LOCKMASTER HOUSES ON THE OHIO RIVER
Section Number 8
Paqe 2
The Lockmaster Houses in McMechen are contributing under National Register
Criterion A for their association with the 1929 Lock and Dam System on the
Ohio River.
The canalization of the Ohio River took place from 1877 to
1929 when the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers undertook the massive project
of erecting 54 locks and dams along the river to provide a minimum depth
of ? feet for navigation. The lockmaster houses in McMechen were part o f
Lock and Dam Site #13 erected between 1905 and 1911.
The first Inland Waterways Improvement Act in 1824, created the Army Corps
of Engineers which were empowered by President Monroe to experiment with
ways to cope with sandbars on the Ohio River. Until 1877, the use of
cutoff dams on back channels provided the principal means of improving the
navigable depth. Most of these dams were built between Pittsburgh and
Cincinnati from 1826 to 1845. Without the use of dams the Ohio River had
high periods after heavy rains or ice thaws when navigation was possible,
or it was so low that one was capable of walking across the river bed
while navigation was brought to a standstill.
Although i t had been suggestsd as early as 1835, by Lt. George Dutton,
that only the construction of locks and dams would adequately improve the
river for year round use, the idea was never carried out.
In 1870, the
idea was revived and four years later i t was recommended that 13 locks and
dams be construction between Pittsburgh and Wheeling to provide a 6 foot
depth for navigation. Congress appropriated 8100,000 through the River
and Harbor Act of 18?5 toward building a movable dam (cr a dam with
adjustable gates) at Davis Island, located 4.7 miles south of Pittsburgh,
to test the best method of improving the Ohio River and its tributaries.
T h e construction of Dam #1 took place between 1877-1885, with the purpose
of providing a pool for coalboats to assemble. Then during high water the
boats could pass through the lowered gate without having to lock through
each dam.
T h e adjustable gates were called a wicket and were invented by Chief
Jacques Chanoine of the French Corps of Engineers in 1852. The Chanoine
wickets are timbers bolted together at a certain spacing and mounted with
a metal brace against a masonry foundation.
In high water they are
lowered with a maneuverboat to lie flat against the foundation and at low
water are raised to form a dam. The locks at each dam were 1 1 0 x '600
f e e t , which became a standard dimension to fit coal boats.
A series of River and Harbor Acts from 1881 to 1906 provided
recommendations and appropriations by Congress to survey and construct a
number o f locks and dams to insure a depth of 6 and 9 feet. In December
o f 1906, i t was recommended that a 9 foot depth be obtained through a
series of 54 locks and dams along the 981 mile length of the Ohio River.
In 1910, money was appropriated for the purchase of sites for 1 8
additional locks and dams. The entire project took 19 years to complete
instead of the projected 12 years. By 1929, the project was complete with
a total o f 51 wicket dams, each with a 1 1 0 x 600' lockchamber, and a
navigable pass during periods of high water. There were three dam
(NPS Form 10-900)
United States Department of the Interior
National Park Service
NATIONAL REGISTER OF HISTORIC PLACES
CONTINUATION SHEET
MCNECHEN LOCKMASTER HOUSES ON THE OHIO RIVER
S e c t i o n Number 8
Paqe 3
structures which were eliminated through modification of other sites. The
property for Lock and Dam #13 at McMechen, West Virginia, was acquired S Y
the U.S. Government in April 1905 from landcwner Frederick Schaffer.
Construction was completed on the site in 1911, a year after the two
residencss and garage were erected. The powerhouse was lccated along the
east bank o f the r i v ~ rin front of the residences and connected to the one
1 1 0 x 600' lock and dam which was placed in operation in August 1 9 1 1 at a
cost o f $1,222,389. Mr. George Patrick was the first lockmaster at D m
#13. H e had worked for the No. 7 Dam at St. Albans, WV, as well as Lock #2
in Rochester, P A , before coming to McMechen.
An expert in concrete werk,
Patrick was involved in constructicn of the lock and dam before being
asked to become the l o c k m a s t ~ r . The Patrick's occupied the Dcwn Ri\/er
House (625)until he was transferred to Lock # 5 on the Kanawaha R i v ~ r in
1923. The U p River House (623) was occupied by the engineer, Mr. Fred
O'Malley who kept ths power locks running.
The ~ L U Oresidences are Tudor Revival ic style, with red brick on the first
floor, and an aggregate stoczo on the second floor with half-timbering.
The same house plans are known to have been used at Lock avd Dam sites 8 ,
1 1 , 1 2 14, 20 and 29, and possibly 18 and 19. These plans were either
drawn by the Corps of Engineers awn architect= or were contracted out to
other firms.
The 1909 building plans of Lock and Dam # 8 shew elevations
of the house.
In separate drawings of the powerhouse there is a note that
the drawings were done b y W.G. Wilkins Company, and then traczd and
approved b y the Corps.
The period of significance for the lockmaster houses in McMechen is being
recognized from 1905 when the property was acquired, to 1939, ten ysars
after the canalization of the Ohio River was completed. The lock and dam
was used up until 1975 when the Hannibal Dam replaced locks 12, 13, and
14. The powerhouse, lcck and dam from No. 13 were removed in 1977, and
the homes were deeded to the City of McMechen.
The change to the present modern locks and d a m s began in 1953 and was
completed in 1979. The modernization of the Ohio River dams took place
because o f increased navigation traffic; longer 1,000 foot tows due to
economy measures, which had to be broken up with the old 600' locks; and
deterioration of the structures calling for increasing maintenance costs.
T o d a y ' s nineteen locks and dams on the Ohio River are eqcipped with tb~o
locks, one measuring 1 1 0 x 600',and one 1 1 0 x 1200'. This insures at
least o n e lock is in operation while the other can undergo maintenance,
and provides for large or small crafts or tows.
The dams are nonnavigable
with movable radial steel gates in an arc operating on a hinge.
The lockmaster hauses in McMechen represent the early history of the lock
and dam system on the Ohio River and the first complete canalization of
the river for navigation. Buildings from this 1929 project are a rariety
now. All the wicket dams and locks have been removed and consolidated
with the modern lock and dam system of the 1 9 6 0 ' s - 7 0 ' s . Many of the
(NPS Form 10-900)
United States Department o f the Interior
National Park Service
N4TIONAL REGISTER OF HISTORIC PLACES
C O N T I N U A T I O N SHEET
MCMECHEN LOCKMASTER HOUSES ON THE OHIO R I V E R
Section Number 8
Paqe 4
powerhouses have also been razed although a few sites have found new uses
or are privately owned. In many cases i t is only the residences that
remain to mark the history of the dam sites. The two residences and
garage in McMechen are unaltered and reflect the building standards set up
for some of t h e sites between Lock and Dam #8 - 28, owned by the U.S. Army
Corps of Engineers.
( N P S Form 10-900)
United States Department of t h e Interior
National Park Service
NATIONAL REGISTER OF HISTORIC PLACES
CONTINUATION SHEET
MCMECHEN LOCKMASTER HOUSES ON THE OHIO RIVER
Section Number
9
Paqe
2
Johnson, Leland R. THE HEADWATERS DISTRICT.
of Engineers, c. 1985.
Pittsburgh:
U.S. Army Corps
Johnson, Leland R .
OHIO RIVER NAVIGATION, PAST - PRESENT - FUTURE.
Cincinnati: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, 19?9.
Interview with George S. Patrick, son of first lockmaster George Patrick,
by Rosemary Conti, June 1992.
Drawings, inventory and plat maps, U.S. Army Corps o f Engineers,
1904-1932, located at Pittsburgh, and Huntington District Offices.
Section N u m b e r
10
Paqe
2
VERBAL BOUNDARY DESCRIPTION
169.06 feet to the place of beginning, containing 0.987 acres.
(NPS Form 1 0 - 9 0 0 )
United S t a t e s D e p a r t m e n t o f t h e Interior
National Park Service
N A T I O N A L REGISTER OF HISTORIC PLACES
C O N T I N U A T I O N SHEET
LOCAT I ON :
McMechen Lockmaster Houses on the Ohio River
6 2 3 - 6 2 5 Grant Street, McMechen
Marshall County, West Virginia
PHOTO CREDIT:
Katherine M. Jourdan
DATE:
7 August 1992
NEGATIVES:
On file WV SHPO, The Cultural Center, Capitol Complex
Char leston, W O 25305-0300
PHOTO 1 OF 9:
6 2 5 Grant - West
PHOTO 2 OF 9 :
6 2 5 Grant
PHOTO 3 OF 9:
625
PHOTO 4 OF 9 :
6 2 5 Grant - East
( L ) and South ( R ) Elevations
Camera looking Northeast
- West Elevation
Camera looking East
( L ) and 6 2 3 ( R ) G r a n t - South ( L ) and East ( R )
Elevations. Camera looking Northwest
( L ) and North
( 2 ) Elevations
Camera looking South
PHOTO 5 OF 9:
6 2 3 Grant - West Elevation
Camera looking East
PHOTO 6 OF 9 :
6 2 3 Grant - South
( L ) and East ( R ) Elevations
Camera looking North
- East (L) and North ( R ) Elevations
Camera looking Southwest
PHOTO 7 OF 9:
6 2 3 Grant
PHOTO 8 O F 9 :
Garage, Grant Street - South ( L ) and East ( R ) Elevations
Camera looking Northwest
PHOTO 9 OF 9:
Site View from Ohio River - Picnic Shelter, Basketball
Court, Houses b y trees.
Camera looking East
McMechen, West Virginia
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B Garage
-- . . C .Picnic Shelter
D Basketball Court
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MCMECHEN LOCKMASTER HOUSES ON THE OHIO RIVER
CI
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8
>
Sketch Map of Site Plan
Map from County Assessors Office
O
H
I
O
R I V E R
MCMECHEN LOCKMASTER H O U S E S ON THE OHIO R I V E R
PHOTO MAP
Enlarged from County Assessors Map