This is Melanie Sturgeon, and on behalf of the Sun Cities Area Historical Society and the Arizona Historical Foundation I am interviewing John Meeker, the former President of the Del Webb Development Company in his home in Phoenix, Arizona. It is March 6, 1996.
MEEKER: I was born in Brownwood, Texas in 1926, June 5th. We moved to Arizona and I grew up in the Phoenix area, went to school here, went into the service in 1944, came out in 1946 and went to work for the Webb Corporation.
STURGEON: How did you decide to do that?
MEEKER: Well, I met Mr. Webb. I used to caddy after school and weekends and I met Mr. Webb on the golf course at Phoenix Country Club in 1941 and started caddying for him and when I finished high school and went into the service he asked me to come back and see him after I got out of the service and I did and decided to give the construction business a whirl rather than go to Arizona State, and I must say that I am very happy that I did because I had a very rewarding working relationship with the Webb Company.
STURGEON: And how did you start out when you started there?
MEEKER: I started out as the assistant mail clerk. About as low as you can get. From there I worked in various — I worked in the warehouse, then moved into the accounting department, worked for various accounting functions and equipment management. At that time the Webb Company was involved in primarily Type A construction type projects, hospitals, office buildings, high-rise buildings. I worked on the Phoenix Veterans' Hospital as an assistant job engineer. Then I moved to Kansas City, Missouri on another Veterans' Hospital which Webb was working on. I was the office manager there. Then I transferred to Travis Air Force Base where Webb was building some barracks buildings for the Air Force. Then went from there to San Manuel, Arizona where I was a job engineer, where they built a thousand homes, a hospital, school, commercial and so forth for the Magma Copper Company. Then I came back to Phoenix and worked on various jobs, hotel jobs and along the way there I worked in Las Vegas on the Sahara Hotel and motel that they built and then came to Phoenix and got involved in the housing in the Phoenix area in 1954-55 and built houses in various locations around the valley for Webb until Sun City was started which was in 1959 and I became involved in the planning and model home design of Sun City. [READ MORE]
|Promotional video about Sun City, Arizona produced by Del E. Webb Corporation in about 1961. Great look at the 1960's - cars, customs, etc. [click here to view Part 1]||Part II of promotional video produced by Del E. Webb Corporation in early 1960's. Great look at the 60's including cars, clothes, etc.
[click here to view Part 2]
|Spring 2013||Fall 2013|
|Spring 2012||Fall 2012|
Del Webb Sun Cities Museum tour with museum past-president, Bill Pearson.