Scaffolding History

It’s always fascinating to look back in history to the tools our distant ancestors used to shape their world. What is ancient technology from our viewpoint was cutting-edge to them, and it served everything from agriculture to construction to art and more, tens of thousands of years ago.

A few months ago, The Rigging Shack took a long look back in history to early evidence of the use of cranes and the ropes that our ancient ancestors devised to use with them. Scaffolding history gets the spotlight this month. Once again, it’s impressive how sophisticated these long-ago relatives were in inventing solutions without the wonders of modern manufacturing. While evidence indicates that Egyptians used wooden scaffolding for building associated with the pyramids, a look much further back in time shows that the first artist to use scaffolding to paint a ceiling came long before Michelangelo.

Articles and historical papers on the use of scaffolding to reach the ceilings of Lascaux Cave are plentiful, and ScaffMag featured an article on the topic in December of 2016: Reaching for the sky – A potted history of scaffolding. It’s an article that presents an interesting walk through scaffolding history.

With regard to the cave drawings, we have to observe, this one seems to suggest cave-life technology may have been further along than we’d imagined. There appears to be a “www” in this drawing. Did the internet actually come into being 15,000 years ago?!

Caveman Drawings


If so, you have to wonder if those cave people were happy with their internet provider!


American Scaffolding Employee Feature

Closer to home, in place and in the continuum of time, we aimed the employee feature spotlight on Dave Seibert this month.


Dave Seibert


American Scaffolding was founded in April 1992. American Scaffolding salesman and estimator, Dave Seibert, is one of the company’s first employees. He shared his 25th anniversary right along with the company.

Dave’s job gets him involved with projects that reach beyond Cincinnati in all directions. Some of the memorable locations he named involved Atlanta, Charlevoix, Kansas City and Dallas. And, those are just a few. He’s covered a lot of ground in 25 years!

What’s great about the job for Dave is the variety.

He remarked, “Every day is unique. No two are the same. I see different projects, different locations, different needs that all need a one-of-a-kind solution.”

In addition, Dave enjoys out-thinking the competition. Sometimes it is about cost, but mostly it’s about being creative. With every project, he likes the challenge of looking for THE competitive edge to win the job.

Asked about some of the most interesting jobs he has been involved with, Dave named many that are right here in Cincinnati. They include the shopping and entertainment center, Newport on the Levy, the former control tower at the Blue Ash Airport, which was converted to an observation tower with the airport’s transformation to “Summit Park” and the “tiara” of the Great American Insurance Company building.


Great American Tower Cincinnati


Wait! Is there really a tiara on that building?!


With a Nickname like “Queen City”…

…it’s only fitting that the Cincinnati’s tallest building is crowned with a tiara. Yes, it’s true. Actually, both are true. If you’re in Cincinnati as you read this, it’s no surprise to you that it’s nickname is “The Queen City”. Yet, many wonder how that nickname came to be.

The answer seems to be as simple as pride. Shameless civic pride. Several sources reference the rapid growth of Cincinnati in the early 1800’s as the force building up to Cincinnati’s identity as “Queen City of the West”.

And, it’s apparently true as well, that two hundred years later, the structure atop the Great American Insurance Company building is a “tiara”, inspired by one worn by Princess Diana. This, recognized even by The Telegraph in the UK: Skyscraper inspired by Princess Diana’s tiara catches eye of architectural world.

Bringing it all back home, American Scaffolding has had a hand in periodic inspections of the Queen City’s tiara over the years. You have to admit, one of the perks of this work would be the view!


Dave on Roof of Greater American Insurance Building

Now, looking at the historical perspective, from cave ceilings to the Sistine Chapel to the tops of skyscrapers, just consider the successive heights that scaffolding and ropes have taken mankind to!


Industrial Wire Rope – Coming to YouTube Soon!

Over the past few weeks, Industrial Wire Rope has been developing a series of brief videos that exhibit the quality and craftsmanship that go into the assembly of our slings. Beginning in May, you will be able to see this video series on YouTube. We’ll have more information in our April newsletter as we get closer.

Certainly, as your industrial wire rope and scaffolding needs develop, please visit our sites, and give us a call!

In the meantime, in the world beyond Industrial Wire Rope and American Scaffolding, we’ll see who wins March Madness, celebrate Easter, open the baseball season – and MAYBE see some spring weather!