Wool Warehouse, Albuquerque, NM (History)

By 1917 Frank Bond was a prominent man in New Mexico business, owning twelve companies in New Mexico. Española was the headquarters for all of the Bond Interests. In 1924 and 1928 he was a possible gubernatorial candidate. However Bond insisted that his good friend, Richard C. Dillon who was also Republican, run for governor. Dillon won the election. Although Bond never ran for governor, he remained politically active in Española with the Republican Party. He then pushed for the incorporation of Española into a municipality and after succeeding in doing that he helped elect the first mayor, F.R. Frankenburger. Bond served as “Popular” mayor of Española from 1907 to 1913, and again from 1918 to 1922. He also served as a trustee on the local school board in Española.

When Frank Bond moved his headquarters to Albuquerque in 1925, he not only moved to the market center of the wool industry in the Southwest, he also moved because of his daughter Hazel’s health. Hazel had contracted tuberculosis and Albuquerque was known for its multiple treatment centers. Tragically it was his other daughter, Amy, who died suddenly in the following year. As if this were not enough, Hazel died two years later. In the same year as Hazel’s death, work on the Wool Warehouse was begun. Perhaps these two tragic losses so close to one another is what motivated him to start work on this new project. After the death of his daughters, Bond decided to stay in Albuquerque where he purchased a large home. He moved most of his wool businesses to Albuquerque and established a few more business ventures. He built the Wool Warehouse Company with his son, Frank Bond Jr., and several other partners.

By 1930 the warehouse took its first clip of wool and continued as a center for wool and hide sales and storage until 1972 when the sharp decline of wool production caused the Bonds to lease the building to other tenants. They continued to own the building until 1976 when they sold it to the City of Albuquerque which used it for record storage.

The Wool Warehouse was eventually declared a National Historic Landmark in 1978. Designed in 1928 by T. Charles Gaastra, the architect of the Monte Vista and Eugene Field Elementary Schools, the Wool Warehouse is a two-story brick, 40,000 square foot building. Built in 1929, the building housed offices of the New Mexico Cooperative Wool Marketing Association, Bond McRae Company (dealers in wool) and the New Mexico – Arizona Wool Warehouse Company.

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