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Los Angeles Pressed Brick Co. | by MichaelRyerson
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Los Angeles Pressed Brick Co.

Charlie Frost organized the Los Angeles Pressed Brick and Terra Cotta Company in 1887. The company office was located at 204 South Spring Street until 1896, when it was moved to 119 South Broadway. In 1900, the office was moved to the Frost Building at 145 Broadway. The entire sixth floor of the Frost Building was where the company had its products showroom. The original brickyard (shown here) was located on three acres of land at Cleveland and College (very near the French Hospital). They used clay taken from this location (and supplemented it with clay brought in from Riverside County) until they closed this yard in 1916 and moved into a new, expanded (13 acres!) operation on Date Street right where it makes that 90 degree turn to run up to Alhambra Street. Interestingly, at least to me, you can find the second yard by starting at the first yard at College and Cleveland and simply running your finger down the map (Baist 1921), (and in running your finger down College passing within a block of Bruno Street) following College to where it turns into Date Street. The Los Angeles Pressed Brick yard is south of Date Street.


In 1926, Howard Frost decided to retire and this caused a large block of his holdings to be transferred to the Gladding, McBean & Company, which took control of the Los Angeles Pressed Brick Company. Frost retained a large number of shares and remained a director for four more years. The offices of the two companies were combined on February 22, on the top floor of the Pacific Finance Building in Los Angeles. Atholl McBean became the new president, replacing Howard Frost, and F.B. Ortman the vice-president and general manager, replacing Richard D. Hatton. Gladding, McBean & Company allowed the Los Angeles Pressed Brick Company to continue to operate independently, except for the terra cotta sales, which Gladding, McBean & Company wanted to control. The total gross sales of the two companies were estimated to range between $6,000,000 and $7,000,000 annually. Gus Larson remained the plant manager of the company plants


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Taken on August 15, 2014