A small office on Main Street Eolia is filled with drafting tables, half a dozen large screen computers, a wide variety of construction plans, and three fellows that immediately make visitors feel welcome to their work area. Mike Martin and his sons Aaron and Nick spread their influence across the state via plans that the general public does not typically know of. However, at any given point in time, residents view and appreciate the diligence of their work in many different locations.
The Martin men work on a wide variety of jobs. One of the closest to home stands just several blocks from their office. The old Eolia High School has been renovated from its original state and the subsequent use as a fiberglass factory to the beautifully designed Eolia School Apartment Building. Having been raised by parents who both attended the school in its original form as youngsters, Mike, along with business partners, had a keen interest in claiming the building from potential wreckage. The building had served (and continues to serve) as a tangible memory of a bygone Eolia before Clopton School District was established.
Beyond this local project the Martin team works on jobs awarded by the Missouri Department of Conservation and other organizations, with costs ranging from thousands of dollars to several million. Mike, Nick, and Aaron work together to get an overview of the locations where the projects will take place, establish connections with subcontractors, and supervise even the finest details of construction. They are called upon to replace existing structures that are failing and to build or create parts on buildings, walkways, and holding areas that authentically match the structures’ historic records. Currently, the Martin men are working on eleven large-sized jobs simultaneously.
A variety of local projects have been completed by Martin General Contractors, including one that most Lincoln County residents have visited without even knowing so. The County Courthouse in Troy needed a reboot of its front columns and trim so Mike Martin researched extensively to imitate the designs accurately. The original cast iron columns were replaced by wood, as the cast-iron factories available in the 1800s no longer exist. Additionally, the bases had to be completely redone. A Warrenton company that accesses 3-D computer programs replicated the bases by creating prototypes, then the Martins followed the models to produce the bases which are currently in place.
A project noteworthy for the Elsberry population is the skillful work demonstrated at the Elsberry Health Care Center, providing outdoor space in the courtyard for the residents to enjoy on good-weather days.
Dad Mike, who plans to retire from his 40-year career within the near future, has found projects that revive the history of an area especially intriguing. Near Paris stands Union Covered Bridge which spans 180 feet, made sturdy by the Martin team’s reconstruction directives. The is one of the few remaining free-standing span bridges in the state.
Following his retirement, brothers Nick and Aaron will continue to work closely with their father as the coming years pass. The legacy of Martin General Contractors will undoubtedly continue to remain one of congeniality, professionalism, and thoroughness.