ICYMI: Video of The Implosion of the Western United Life Building in Midland
This past Saturday was the day that the 75-year-old Western United Life Building became a pile of rubble in downtown Midland. The building witnessed its last sunrise on Saturday morning, then an hour or so later came down in a blaze of glory.
The History: It's The Building 2 Former U.S. Presidents Used to Work Inside of
The building was planned in 1926 but was not officially announced until 1947 and was completed in 1948.
The building's first name upon completion was the McClintic Building after two brothers, Henry and Charles McClintic, who owned the land where the building was built.
The brothers had office space in the Petroleum Building which was right next door throughout the 1930s and 40s where they had a business dealing in real estate, city property, farm and ranch land, and oil leases and royalties.
The Petroleum Building and McClintic building had a tunnel under Colorado St. connecting the two buildings and was built at a cost of $1 million in 1947 which would be approximately $13 million now.
Originally the building was only supposed to be 5 stories but while the building was being constructed it was announced that the building would expand to 14 floors.
The year after it opened the building was one of the largest buildings in West Texas with 225,000 square feet of rentable area.
The building changed its name in 1954 to the Petroleum Life Building and then changed its name to the Western United Life Building in 1957 and has been that name ever since.
In 1952, in room 732, a future president, George H. W. Bush, was president of his own company named Bush-Overbey Oil Development Company which he co-owned with John Overbey, the vice-president of the company.
His son, George W. Bush, also had an office in the building as Arbusto Energy which later became Bush Exploration.