Cowtown Yoostabes, Glenwood Edition: From Furniture to Forgings

If you know where this building is,

you’re getting out too much.

It’s at 1529 East Broadway just off Vickery Boulevard in an industrial part of the East Side. It’s in Glenwood south of North Glenwood.

The building, in the upper right of this aerial photo, is inaccessible to the public because it’s now part of a forgings company that does defense contract work. (I shot my photo through a chain link fence.) But sixty years ago this building yoostabe a furniture factory.

In 1907 W. E. Austin formed Hub Furniture Company from Fort Worth Furniture Company, which had been around since at least 1890. If you’re keeping score, in 1914 Hub processed 1.25 million board-feet of lumber.

hub 1915Newspaper ad from 1915.

In this 1921 photo, the building is behind the two towers.

hub-ignThis later aerial photo shows Hub (lower right) and the rail yard of International & Great Northern railroad (upper left). (Photo from University of Texas at Arlington Library.)

Hub made furniture . . .

and bedding in this building until 1943, when Hub Furniture Co. was bought by . . .

hub 43Curtis Mathes.

The Curtis Mathes company was not always the maker of “the most expensive television set in America; and darn well worth it.” That came later. Curtis Mathes began in 1919 making automobile and tractor parts (it introduced lights on tractors). Who knew?

Then the company, in a factory on Calhoun Street downtown, began making safety fans and evaporative coolers—with wooden cabinets, naturally.

Then furniture. In fact, Curtis Mathes made furniture in the building on East Broadway Street from 1943 to 1960. Photo shows the factory’s plywood department. But by 1960 the company was concentrating on making TV sets and other consumer electronics, and in 1963 the building was sold, eventually becoming part of W. Pat Crow Forgings. (Thanks to Glenn Waters of for the interior photo.)

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6 Responses to Cowtown Yoostabes, Glenwood Edition: From Furniture to Forgings

  1. Linda C Williams says:

    I have a dining room table with two leaves and 6 chairs that have the “Hub” tag on it. I would love to know more about my dining room set. I’ve had it about 35 years.

  2. Bill Melton says:

    My dad worked for Hub Furniture and Mathes company for 40 years. He retired in 1957 from Mathes Company. Most of the complex in the 1921 photo survived until 1967, when most of it was destroyed in a fire. The fire as a “General Alarm”, and I think the fire may still be the largest structure fire in Fort Worth’s history.

  3. Gary Essary says:

    Very interesting. My parents bought a mahogany bedroom set about 1944 with the Mathes Company on Broadway label intact on the back of the dresser mirror. We’re selling it now.

  4. Linda says:

    I have been looking for the history of Hub Furniture in Ft. Worth for a long time. I have a dining room set with the labels partially/completely intact, but until I found your site had no data backing its antiquity. Thank you very much! It was such fun reading this information.

    • hometown says:

      Thanks, Linda. When I noticed that old building in an aerial photo I was convinced it had been built as a school. Finding out otherwise led me to discover the history of Hub.

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