Weber-Staub-Briscoe Architectural Collection online!

Fondren Library is happy to announce the digitization of 940 objects from the Weber-Staub-Briscoe Architectural Collection.

Botanical and geometrical design ornament

Botanical and geometrical design ornament originally installed at the Clayton house in Houston, Texas, 1940

Founded in the late 1920’s by Herman Weber as Weber Iron Works, Weber Iron & Wire Company was a fabricator of high-quality custom architectural details in metal and other materials, and became instrumental in creating original designs and duplications of fine nineteenth-century ornamental ironwork and metalwork for the projects of many of Houston’s leading architects and builders, most notably John F. Staub and Birdsall P. Briscoe. In order to produce the exceptional metalwork exactly as specified by the designs of the architects, scale and full-sized drawings of the designs were created. Most pieces were created by a detailed process including the formation of a replica of the design in clay which was cast in aluminum and placed on a pattern board used to make the final castings in iron, bronze, or aluminum. The body of work produced by Weber enriched Houston’s heritage for the greater part of the 20th century, and continues to be admired in many of Houston’s architectural treasures.

The digitized portion of the collection includes pattern boards (design molds) and metal castings of architectural details such as stair rails, fencing, and other metalwork ornaments manufactured by Weber Iron & Wire Company from the 1930’s to the 1990’s. The larger collection also includes photographs, architectural drawings, reference books, and tools used in the manufacturing process, along with invoices from the company from 1933 to 1987.

Resources

The original materials which these digitized versions represent are held by Rice University, Fondren Library, Woodson Research Center. The materials are available for research by appointment.