Leonard A. Melkus (1906-1996), Architect-Builder
Leonard A. Melkus was born March 25, 1906 in Lincoln, to Edward and Monica Kozlowski Melkus. After graduating high school in Grand Island, Melkus spent a while at the University of Nebraska, then transferred to the School of Architecture at the University of Minnesota, from which he graduated in 1930. The next year, he took a job with the Geer Company, which later became the Geer Melkus Construction Company. Melkus oversaw the construction operations there.
On October 26, 1936, Melkus married Margery Wochner, with whom he had six children. Melkus was a member of the board of directors for the Chamber of Commerce and St. Mary's Cathedral Parish. He was a fourth-degree Knight of Columbus, and, at one point, was president of the Nebraska Building Chapter of the Association of General Contractors. He was also president of the Grand Island Engineers Club. Melkus died February 29, 1996.
Compiled Nebraska Directory Listings
Grand Island, Nebraska, 1931-1933, 1934-1974
Educational & Professional Associations
____: graduated Grand Island public schools, Grand Island, Nebraska.
____: student, University of Nebraska, Lincoln.
1930: graduated, University of Minnesota School of Architecture.
1938: Registered Professional Architect, Nebraska, A-32; January 18, 1938.
1942-1948: no Grand Island directories.
1949-1958: architect, Geer-Maurer Construction Company, Grand Island, Nebraska.
1959-1960: no Grand Island directories.
1961-1976: architect and president, Geer-Melkus Construction Company, Grand Island, Nebraska.
1977: retired, Grand Island, Nebraska.
1979-1985: chairman of the board, Geer-Melkus Construction Company, Grand Island, Nebraska.
1986: retired, Grand Island, Nebraska.
Buildings & Projects
Riverside Golf Club (n.d.), Grand island, Nebraska.
Livingston Sondermann Funeral Home (n.d.), Grand Island, Nebraska.
St. Mary’s Convent (n.d.), Grand island, Nebraska.
First National Motor Bank (n.d.), Grand island, Nebraska.
KSYZ-FM radio station (n.d.), Grand Island, Nebraska.
Honors & Awards
____: Central Nebraska Home Builders Hall of Fame.
____: Knight of St. Gregory, The Vatican.
a. First individual listing in Grand Island directories, 1931.
1. “Leonard Melkus,” Grand Island Independent (March 2, 1996), 15a.
2. “Professional license results for Leonard A. Melkus,” State of Nebraska Board of Engineers and Architects website, accessed December 17, 2013, http://www.ea.ne.gov/search/search.php?page=details&lic=A32
D. Murphy, “Leonard A. Melkus (1906-1996), Architect-Builder,” in David Murphy, Edward F. Zimmer, and Lynn Meyer, comps. Place Makers of Nebraska: The Architects. Lincoln: Nebraska State Historical Society, February 24, 2015. http://www.e-nebraskahistory.org/index.php?title=Place_Makers_of_Nebraska:_The_Architects Accessed, April 20, 2021.
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