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Carter Carburetor Corporation
N. Grand Avenue, St. Louis
aka Carter Automotive Company, Inc.
It fills the equivalent of an entire city block, three stories high and over 300 feet long. Carter Carburetor is a building from the Detroit school of industrial design: long, low, rugged and durable, minimally ornamented... a machine for churning out car parts.
It constitutes an industrial zone in the middle of a largely residential portion of the city, and its decline mirrors the fate of the blocks surrounding it. Long vacant, it derives a great deal of visual interest from the haphazard manner in which the walls and windows were replaced, repaired, and infilled. A crazy-quilt patchwork of colors and textures speaks to a long and hard-working history. Yet when new, it surely sported massive panes of clear glass that would have flooded the interior with generous natural light.
Carter Automotive went out of business in the early 1990s, a victim of evolving technology as fuel pumps replaced carburetors.
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