March 3, 2021
East Texas Baptist University’s Marshall Grand was selected as the recipient of the 2020 Overall Historic Renovation Award among hundreds of projects by Ludowici, a world-renowned tile producer located in New Lexington, Ohio, whose terra cotta tiles are revered worldwide for their distinctive look and sustainable, long-lasting beauty. Winners are chosen each year by an internal Ludowici panel and a popular vote based on factors relating to appearance, uniqueness, complexity, and craftsmanship.
“East Texas Baptist University’s Marshall Grand with its exquisite beauty of Ludowici terra cotta tiles atop, stands as the pinnacle of height in visibility and excellence over Harrison County, Texas,” ETBU President J. Blair Blackburn said. “This historic landmark will continue its preeminence as the icon for our community, a beacon of light for ETBU’s mission in downtown Marshall, in East Texas, and beyond.”
Following storm damage to the roof of the Historic Marshall Grand in 2019, East Texas Baptist University set out to repair the roof and also to restore the building to its original caliber. The University worked with Ludowici, the building’s original roof tile manufacturer in 1929, to produce the specially colored “ETBU Victory Blue” terra cotta roof tiles that would preserve the architectural integrity of the building and to ensure the highest quality materials were used in the process.
“When we considered the historic nature and preservation of our magnificent Marshall Grand and we reflect on all the time, energy, effort, and money that has been invested over the generations to restore one of the most iconic and famous buildings in our East Texas region, ETBU could not entrust the restoration to any other roof contractor or tile manufacturer than Jeff Eubank Roofing and Ludowici,” Dr. Blackburn added. “ETBU celebrates our partnering with a reputable roofing company that has adorned thousands of historic and newly built structures around Texas and across the South and Southwest in Eubank Roofing. As architects, designers, homeowners, universities, commercial, and government clients have done, we proudly linked with Eubank Roofing, Allen Seymour, and Ludowici for the historic roof renovation that we know will stand the test of time and will stand for the supremacy of the clay tiles as they were designed and crafted.“
Ludowici representatives Cindy Walker and Dan Harris visited ETBU’s campus in early February, where they were able to learn about the University and see firsthand the craftsmanship that went into restoring the historic Marshall Grand and its roof, as well as many of the other buildings on ETBU’s campus.
“The Marshall Grand is a shining example of what can be accomplished in a community by key leaders, institutions, and those called upon to implement the work, and from what we learned this week, it is only one of your beautiful examples of repurposing structures and pieces of land in Marshall,” Walker said. “As a company, Ludowici was honored to work with East Texas Baptist and Jeff Eubank Roofing.”