Adobe brick has been used in construction of homes and other structures for centuries.
Adobe brick absorbs the heat of the sun during the day and radiates it into the home at night. It is an excellent method of passive heating for a home. In the summer, the interior of the home is kept cool by the same bricks.
When the Spaniards arrived in the Southwest, they found the native Americans using a method of construction in which mud was puddled, then allowed to dry before adding another layer of mud and allowing it to dry as well.
The Spaniards adapted the methods of the native Americans and created bricks, which they taught the people to used in building their walls.
Here you can see how adobe can withstand the test of time. This building was used as a command post for the Civilian Conservation Corps while creating the pathways and lighting used to make Colossal Cave,
(Colossal Cave Timeline)
near Tucson, accessible to the public. The building was used as an office, and was built in 1934.
While traditional adobe was made of mud and straw, current building codes in some areas do not allow the use of straw due to the danger of fire. Even so, the ancient methods of creating bricks and allowing them to dry in the sun is used today just as it was hundreds of years ago.
While visiting the Old Pueblo Adobe Company in Tucson, Arizona, we were given an amazing look into the past as we witnessed the creation of thousands of adobe brick, meticulously molded and laid out to dry. I discovered this web page where the process of building an adobe wall is detailed. This class was offered by the wonderful folks at the Old Pueblo Adobe Company as well.