Carl W Winstedt and the National Construction Company began construction on the Aloha Tower on 1924. The project took a year and a half to complete.
Aloha Tower opened in 1926; at 184-feet, 2-inches tall, it was the tallest building in the Territory (and remained such for the next forty years.) (LRB)
Winstedt was originally from Sweden. Life wasn’t always so tall for Winstedt; back in 1915, he and his wife Marie Camr Winstedt went through bankruptcy in Juneau, Alaska.
But things were looking up.
Following Aloha Tower, Winstedt built the Egholm Residence in the Diamond Head Terraces subdivision in 1926. It is one of the few examples of small cottages in the Spanish Colonial Revival style popular in Hawai‘i in the 1920s and early-1930s.
Both of those structures (Aloha Tower and Egholm residence) are still here. In fact, there is another structure attributed to Winstedt that is still around, although it is very unlike the prior two examples of his work.
Reportedly in 1926, Winstedt’s National Construction Company, Ltd was the lowest bidder for the construction of a portion of the Kamehameha highway, designated “Job 4057.”
Winstedt and National were awarded the contract for this work by the Territory of Hawaiʻi acting through Lyman H Bigelow, the territorial highway commissioner. (Court Records, March 8, 1933)
Winstedt was to build Kamehameha Highway from Waimea Bay to Kahuku. Reportedly, to support it, in 1930, he built a rock quarry on the North edge of Waimea Bay to produce gravel. (pupukea-waimea)
However, it appears Winstedt and his companies, National Construction Co and Realty Development Co, faced hard times related to the road project.
“(T)he aggregate of the claims filed against the construction company … is in excess of $100,000. It is also conceded that the construction company and the sureties on its bond are insolvent.” (Court Records, March 8, 1933)
The facility was abandoned in 1932; it’s not clear what happened with it for the next 20-years.
Then, St Michael’s Church was looking for a church facility. With changing demographics and land needs, they had given up their 1853 stone church in Waialua and were in a 1923 concrete building; they looked at Waimea, at the far end of the parish.
In April of 1953, the Catholic mission acquired the old rock crusher site and converted the buildings into Saint Michael Parish, Waialua with Mission of Saints Peter & Paul.
The concrete rock silo was converted into a 100-foot bell tower. The former construction company machine sheds were converted into a patio and chapel. (Clark & pupukea-waimea)
About that time, other changes were happening at Waimea Bay; sand was being removed to replenish the eroded Waikīkī Beach, across the island.
Reportedly, before sand mining operations removed over 200,000-tons of sand from Waimea Bay to fill beaches in Waikīkī and elsewhere, there was so much sand that if you would have tried to jump off Pōhaku Lele (Jump Rock,) you would have jumped about six feet down into the sand below.
Like Aloha Tower, the former silo for crushed rubble has become one of the most famous landmarks on Oʻahu.