I dropped one of my business cards on the sidewalk the other day. I reached down to retrieve it and came a finger’s reach from another calling card from the WPA, the Works Project Administration (originally the Works Progress Administration). It was created in 1935 to help in the recovery from the Great Depression. Buildings, bridges and school built by the WPA bear plaques as a remembrance of our recovery—a slow recovery that ended at WWII.
But, sidewalk calling cards aren’t limited to government projects of coarse. On the brighter side, there are many more business cards stamped in the walks of my town. They were stamped by the contractors of 1950, 51, 52 and on. One of them was one of my Dad’s friends, Henry Cox of Cox Brothers Construction Company of Stanton, California.
You can find his calling card in the 1951 neighborhood of East Whittier. Look for it on Ocean View above Mar Vista. Hank Cox was around our house a lot. He lived in Garden Grove where I grew up. My father, a broker, acquired property for Hank to build homes on.
Wonder once in a while. Think of who built this or that structure. Look down at the sidewalk where a stamp, a metal insert, or an iron municipal cover marks the presence of an American worker or contractor. Take notice when it says “Made in USA.”