Josh Conley – Ingram 1926 Historic Structure Report
Process Essay by Josh Conley –
The conception of this project originates far beyond the project itself. Having spent the
greater part of my life passing the Ingram 1926 Building on a day to day basis, it is no
surprise that I built a love for it as a beautiful structure, representative of an era of
prosperity for the community that I was brought up in. The beauty and detail of the
building, un-matched elsewhere in the town of Blytheville, Arkansas, captivated me from a
young age. I would even extend the sentiment that it is with great credit to the Ingram
1926 building and those that surround her, that I possess a love of buildings, of
preservation, and of their value to the local culture. The downtown Blytheville area has
made great strides for the preservation of those valuable properties and I applaud the city
and its organizations for their forward thinking and understanding of how valuable these
structures truly are. As I began my research for this project I was in contact with the Main
Street Organization and other community members regarding any supplemental information
that might be offered for the creation of this report. No major documentation has been
made of this site as far as my research could tell. A small amount of information from the
book Reverend H.T. Blythe and the Downtown He Founded, prepared by Jonathan Abbot
and Marcy Thompson is used later in this report, as a tool to help frame the history of the
area and the cultural significance of this structure.
The timing of this report could be no better. Recently, the Ingram 1926 Building has
undergone a bit of exchange regarding property ownership. The building currently awaits
renovation at the hands of local contractor, Mr. Marty Crawford. It is no doubt that Mr.
Crawford is a skilled craftsman who does a marvelous job at what he does professionally.
However, as is often the case with buildings that have seen their fair share of aging and
face a major overhaul of the interior features and finishes, the original charm and details
can sometime get swept up in the process. This report if nothing else, will stand as a
valuable record of this building prior to major renovation.
This report was completed with very limited time and without access to certain parts of the
building. The lower, and Southernmost section of the building, which is referred to in the
report as the “warehouse” section, or Section B1, is still in operation as a storage facility
and currently in private hands. With this being the case, there are some areas of the
structure that were not documented, and some issues, such as the floor structure of
Section B2, that were unable to be explored. This restraint is expressed various times
throughout the remainder of this report. The creation of this report, and the
documentation required to complete it, was done with very limited time. As this was the
case, you will notice that the original layout of the interior portions of offices and
apartments are left blank. No time was taken determine the original layout of these
interior spaces, rather, the time was taken to determine exactly the location of the main
dividing walls between the apartments, offices and differing sections, which proved to
have been a more valuable use of time. This can be seen more fully in the Measured
Drawings Section, found at the end of this report.
Many photographs were taken on site while only a selection are used in this report. Prints
of these photographs are available upon request. No historic fabric was removed or
altered during the completion of this report, in accordance with the scope and nature of
this project. No scaffolding of other inspection structures were constructed. No
intrusive methods were used to inspect the structure. Therefore, only observations of the
exterior and interior surfaces which were nominally accessible were possible. This report
is mainly a physical inspection of the structure as is stands today.