Why construction gets better all the time (May, 1949)

Why construction gets better all the time

Where roads were once built a shovelful at a time … today mammoth earth-movers handle a ton of earth at a time. Mobile cranes swing 20 tons at the flick of a switch. Giant crushers grind 150 tons of rock an hour. Traveling concrete mixers place entire batches as they go.

These are just a few of our improved powered tools of today that do a better job of construction faster and easier. They help provide us with critically needed new housing and business buildings . . . with super-highways and airfields for safer, smoother travel. And these tools are ours today because of better materials . . . and continuing research.

Alloy steels, for example, give them greater strength to resist shock and abrasive action . . . stamina to overcome the strain of day-by-day speed-up demands. And modern oxy-acetylene processes for welding and flame-cutting speed production of these better products of better steel.

Carbon is in the picture, too. In the form of electrodes, it’s essential both to the production of alloy steels and the making of calcium carbide . .. from which comes acetylene gas for welding. Also, a chemical known as an amine provides a wetting agent for asphalt. . . speeding construction by making the asphalt stick more easily and firmly to its crushed rock base.

The people of Union Carbide produce these and many other materials essential to today’s better building and construction. They also produce hundreds of other materials for the use of science and industry, to help meet the needs of mankind.


  1. Tim says: December 21, 20091:58 pm

    Is that kid going grey already?!

  2. Warren says: December 21, 20095:23 pm

    @Tim: Sure looks that way. Obviously they were working him hard at the primary school.

  3. George says: December 21, 20096:05 pm

    That’s not a kid. He’s an 80 year old man who took carbide supplements.

  4. Neil Russell says: December 21, 20096:29 pm

    He’s probably going grey from nerves because of the super highway in his backyard.
    “…If only sis had been quicker with that poisoned cheese sandwich from the other entry, that surveyor would be just a memory now…”

  5. Charlene says: December 22, 20096:42 pm

    So construction “gets better all the time” because of a grey-haired giant child operating surveying equipment as a tea-drinking ghost smiles benignly in the sky.

    What exactly was the illustrator smoking?

  6. Lone Gunman says: January 13, 20104:00 am


    He wasn’t smoking–he was drinking J&B.

    You know–to impress the ladies….

Submit comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.