Traditional Building Materials Production in 19th Century Istanbul: Preferences in Housing Construction in Light of Ottoman Archival Documents

Erdal Y., Mazlum D.

International Journal of Architectural Heritage, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/15583058.2022.2163722
  • Journal Name: International Journal of Architectural Heritage
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Arts and Humanities Citation Index (AHCI), Scopus, Aerospace Database, Art Source, Communication Abstracts, Compendex, Geobase, Index Islamicus, Metadex, Civil Engineering Abstracts
  • Keywords: Housing heritage, Istanbul houses, masonry houses, timber houses, traditional construction techniques
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


© 2023 Taylor & Francis.In Istanbul’s poorly surviving 19th century housing heritage, brick masonry and timber-clad, unfilled timber-frame are the most common construction techniques. However, before the 19th century, timber-frame filled with adobe or brick (hımış) was common in Istanbul residences. In the background of this change are the period’s political, economic, and social dynamics. One of these dynamics is related to the production and supply of building materials. This study traces the possibilities and restrictions experienced in the production process of traditional building materials during the 19th century through the data (Republic of Turkey Presidential State Archives’ documents, historical descriptions, photographs, etc.) obtained from archival research. The preferences in the use of materials in housing construction arising from the issues such as the difficulties in supplying materials in the reconstruction processes, the transition to industrial production, imported building materials into the domestic market, etc., are examined under the headings of three traditional building materials (timber, stone, brick). Historic maps are also used to illustrate how the prevailing choices affected the city’s urban fabric.