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The Tournalaid homes: a treasure worth saving

The Tournalaid homes: a treasure worth saving
One of the remaining Tournalaid homes in Longview, Texas. Credit: Longview News-Journal

The history of the TournaLayer and TournaLaid home communities begins with the invention of the Tourna-Layer machine by R.G. LeTourneau.

LeTourneau was an inventor and entrepreneur who was born in Richford, VT in 1888. He was an innovator in the construction industry. It’s estimated that over 70% of all dirt moved by the allied forces of WWII was done with a LeTourneau machine.

After the second world war, he created the Tourna-Layer, a revolutionary machine that could construct a concrete home in a day. LeTourneau’s invention of the Tourna-Layer revolutionized the construction industry and had a lasting impact on the post-war home building industry.

The machine was able to lay foundation and walls, as well as roofing, in a single day. The Tourna-Layer allowed for quick and efficient construction of homes, while also providing a high level of quality and durability.

The machine allowed for rapid construction of homes for returning veterans and their families. LeTourneau’s invention of the Tourna-Layer was followed by the creation of the TournaLaid home communities. These communities were built near LeTourneau’s factories in Mississippi and Texas, and were designed to provide affordable housing for returning veterans, with homes being constructed using the Tourna-Layer machine.

These homes were of high quality and were often equipped with modern amenities, such as indoor plumbing and electricity, and even heated flooring, which were not available in most homes at the time. The Tourna-Layer machine has been used to construct homes around the world, including in Israel and South America.