Old Carter Carburetor Offices and Pythias Hall

I’ve looked at the old Carter Carburetor Plant on North Grand Boulevard before many times in the past, and it has been demolished and remediated for PCBs. But the office building for the company was located in the heart of Grand Center.

Originally intended to be a skyscraper in 1925, only the first two stories were built, making it the second of two buildings that suffered that fate in Grand Center (the other being the former Woolworth Building).

Architecturally it’s an interesting structure, with elements of the Beaux-Arts, but somehow I find that description to be unsatisfactory. By the 1920s, there were influences from many different directions, and you can see that in the ornamentation.

The Knights of Pythias, which was a famous African American fraternal organization, held their meetings in the buff brick building directly behind the gray limestone front.

There is a large garage underneath this later structure, built in 1929.

The building has now been renovated into the Grand Center Arts Academy, which uses the nearby former Sun Theater as a performance space.

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