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Mohammed Baghanem

Balloon Frame

Balloon framing is a method of wood construction – also known as "Chicago construction" in the 19th century[8] – used primarily in Scandinavia, Canada and the United States (up until the mid-1950s). It utilizes long continuous framing members (studs) that run from the sill plate to the top plate, with intermediate floor structures let into and nailed to them.[9][10] Here the heights of window sills, headers and next floor height would be marked out on the studs with a storey pole. Once popular when long lumber was plentiful, balloon framing has been largely replaced by platform framing

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Mohammed Baghanem

While no one can be sure who introduced balloon framing in the U.S., the first building using balloon framing was probably a warehouse constructed in 1832 in Chicago, Illinois, by George Washington Snow.[11] The following year, Augustine Taylor (1796–1891) constructed St. Mary's Catholic Church in Chicago using the balloon framing method. Alternatively, the balloon frame has been shown to have been introduced in Missouri as much as fifty years earlier.[12

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The name comes from a French Missouri type of construction, maison en boulin.[12] The curious name of this framing technique is conventionally thought to be a derisive one. [13] Historians have fabricated the following story: As Taylor was constructing his first such building, St. Mary's Church, in 1833, skilled carpenters looked on at the comparatively thin framing members, all held together with nails, and declared this method of construction to be no more substantial than a balloon. It would surely blow over in the next wind! Though the criticism proved baseless, the name stuck.[14

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