The Streamline Era Greyhound Terminals

The Architecture of W.S. Arrasmith

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About the Book

In post–Depression America, Greyhound put adventure within the reach of all. Convinced that their terminals should project the glamour and excitement of travel, the company turned to an architect who could translate the sleek, streamlined Greyhound design into buildings that would both serve and delight the public.
This volume explores the life of William Strudwick Arrasmith, a defining artist of the short-lived era of streamline design, and especially his work for Greyhound—at least fifty terminals and other facilities. The final third of the book is a detailed examination of 28 of these terminals. A full chronology of Arrasmith’s firms and commissions is also included.

About the Author(s)

Retired attorney Frank E. Wrenick is an award-winning transportation author and lecturer who has participated in the restoration of World War II aircraft and a 1918 steam locomotive. He lives in Cleveland Heights, Ohio.
Elaine V. Wrenick is a retired systems analyst and program designer. Her grandfather, Asa Orra Walworth, manufactured the Walworth automobile in Chicago during 1904–1905.

Bibliographic Details

Frank E. Wrenick with the editorial assistance of Elaine V. Wrenick
Foreword by Richard Longstreth
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 204
Bibliographic Info: 79 photos, chronology, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2011 [2007]
pISBN: 978-0-7864-6445-6
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      vii
Foreword by Richard Longstreth      1
Preface      5
Introduction      7

PART I: W. S. ARRASMITH, 1898–1965
1. The Early Years      11
2. Wischmeyer & Arrasmith Forms in Louisville      20
3. Wischmeyer & Arrasmith During the Depression      29
4. Fred Elswick Joins the Firm      41
5. Greyhound Enters the Picture      49
6. Arrasmith’s Service in World War II      59
7. Greyhound’s Architect in the East: The Move to Cleveland      64
8. The Cleveland and Akron Terminals      75
9. Arrasmith Returns to Louisville      81
10. The Greyhound Work Ends      89

PART II: THE STREAMLINE ERA OF GREYHOUND BUS TERMINAL DESIGN
11. A Short History of the Greyhound Bus Company      99
12. The Evolution and Design of Bus Terminals      101
History      101
Design      104
13. Streamline Styling, 1937 to 1948      109
The Greyhound Super Coach      112
The Silversides Greyhound Bus      115
14. Greyhound’s Transition to an Avant-Garde Style      117
15. The Grand Opening      120

PART III: THE GREYHOUND TERMINALS OF W.S. ARRASMITH
A Chronological Survey
1937 Louisville, Kentucky      125
1937 Bowling Green, Kentucky      128
1938 Jackson, Mississippi      129
1938 Fort Wayne, Indiana      130
1938 Binghamton, New York      131
1939 Evansville, Indiana      133
1940 Washington, D.C.      136
1940 Erie, Pennsylvania      140
1940 Columbus, Ohio      141
1940 Dayton, Ohio      143
1940 Atlanta, Georgia      144
1941 Syracuse, New York      146
1941 Buffalo, New York      147
1941 Cincinnati, Ohio      148
1942 Norfolk, Virginia      149
1942 Baltimore, Maryland      149
1942 Chicago, Illinois (Proposed)      151
1946 Hagerstown, Maryland (Proposed)      153
1948 Cleveland, Ohio      153
1949 Akron, Ohio      158
1949 Battle Creek, Michigan      160
1949 Grand Rapids, Michigan      161
1949 Lima, Ohio      162
1950 Lansing, Michigan      163
1950 Boston, Massachusetts      164
1951 Birmingham, Alabama      166
1954 St. Paul, Minnesota      167
1959 Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania      167

Chronology of W.S. Arrasmith Architectural Firms and Commissions      171
Chapter Notes      177
Sources      183
Photograph and Image Credits      189
Index      193

Book Reviews & Awards

  • “One of the few comprehensive sources of information on the subject…get the book. It’s good.”—The Beauty of Transport
  • “The magnitude of…research…is impressive…a definitive academic reference work…belongs in every architectural…and…transportation history library”—Society for Commercial Archeology Journal
  • “Valuable…finely detailed social history…intimate…charming…personalized”—The Journal of American Culture
  • “Extensive chronology, notes, sources and index are impressively detailed. A fitting tribute to a little-known man behind an instantly recognizable icon of American transportation”—Hemmings Motor News