‘Ya just cannot be from around here (and read Preservation in Mississippi) and not know about the Threefoot Building. Meridian’s downtown 15-story skyscraper completed in 1930 earned it the title as the tallest building in Mississippi at the time. Meridian former Mayor Smith said
Since it was built, Meridian and Jackson are the only two cities that have had a recognized skyline in Mississippi. (Paula Merritt, The Meridian Star, September 15, 2015.)
It could have been known as the Dreyfuss Building had the family not changed their name to the English form. One has to admit that Threefoot does have a more picturesque connotation to it, although the reason was pragmatic for German Jewish immigrants in 1929. The Art Deco building also carries a host of documented players including:
- Principal architect Claude H. Lindsley
- Associate architect Frank A. Fort
- Builder/Contractor Garber and Lewis
- Engineer Gardner and Howe
- Mechanical contractor Paine Heating and Tile Company
- Passenger Elevators Otis Elevator Company
- Electrical contractor Bagby Elevator and Electric Company (Mississippi Department of Archives and History, Historic Resources Inventory database)
An abundance of polychromed terra cotta appears on the elaborately decorated Threefoot Building. Impressive with its exterior decoration that incorporates polychromed terra cotta sculpture, tile mosaics, and copper casement windows, the Art Deco skyscraper stands above the other commercial buildings as the defining edifice of the downtown. An intact Art Deco interior is quite stunning with original light fixtures, wood and glass panel office doors with etched glass and hand-stenciled walls. (Linda Ford, December 14, 2004, Meridian Downtown Historic District, National Register of Historic Places nomination form.)
The building is currently undergoing renovation and, hopefully a good dose of restoration and preservation, to become the Courtyard by Marriott/Threefoot hotel. It is also on the 101 Mississippi Places list, and now, I have seen it!
WOW, what a skyscraper. We simply don’t have anything remotely like that here in Ireland. ‘Threefoot’ is a great name.
It is pretty awesome, isn’t it? Apparently, threefoot is the translation of Dreyfuss, so drey must mean three and fuss foot in German?
hmm. . . I wonder how tall a building has to be for a city to have a “skyline”?
My best guess is more than the 1, 2, and sometimes 3 story average around these parts. LOL
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