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Show Me

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The powerful rivers flowing through Missouri are connected to many aspects of the state’s history. Its title as the “Show Me State,” however, likely has origins elsewhere. Many conjecture that this memorable title came from Rep. Willard D. Vandiver’s words in 1899, when he said, “Frothy eloquence neither convinces nor satisfies me. I’m from Missouri. You’ve got to show me.”

Perhaps it was with a similar predilection for common sense that, just four years after Vandiver made the above remark, Thomas Edison touted tilt-up construction as a system that “eliminates the costly, cumbersome practice of erecting two wooden walls to get one concrete wall.”

Throughout the history of this great method of construction, there have been pioneers who have broken new ground and reached new heights. They have laid the groundwork for those to follow and have satisfied all who would say, “show me.” It was Colonel Robert H. Aiken who pioneered the method for military purposes, Thomas Edison who engaged it as an invention, and Irving Gill who presented it as architecture. You need look no further than to the recipients of the TCA’s Murray Parker Memorial Award to see that this pioneering spirit has continued, propelling the industry’s monumental expansion.

President Thomas Jefferson, in a very real way, sent Lewis and Clark on their travels through the unmapped region of the Louisiana Purchase in this spirit of “show me.” With this in mind, we will gather in 2020 under the majestic Gateway Arch near the starting point of Lewis and Clark’s 8,000-mile journey westward and back to celebrate the tilt-up industry pioneers who got us here, hear from the pioneers that are taking us somewhere new, and show the world what we are capable of today.

Mitch Bloomquist

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TILT-UP TODAY, a publication of the Tilt-Up Concrete Association, is THE source for Tilt-Up industry news, market intelligence, business strategies, technical solutions, product information, and other resources for professionals in the Tilt-Up industry. A subscription to TILT-UP TODAY is included in a TCA membership. Subscriptions for potential TCA members are also available. If you would like to receive a complimentary subscription to the publication, please contact the TCA.