Creating the Modern South: Millhands and Managers in Dalton, Georgia, 1884-1984

By Douglas Flamming | Go to book overview

4
MANAGING GROWTH

During the first two decades of the twentieth century, a cohesive industrial community took shape at Crown Mill. Working families slowly began to sink roots into the mill village as wages increased and company officials implemented new labor policies that encouraged workers to remain with the mill. An identifiable company culture emerged, one that served to bridge the cultural and economic gap separating managers and millhands and that built upon their heritage of racial unity. Both workers and mill officials played a part in the rise of a paternalistic mill-village system, and both eventually embraced the notion that they were part of a corporate "family." The necessary condition underlying this process of community development was Crown's success as a business enterprise. Not only did the mill prosper, it expanded significantly during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Its managers displayed an insatiable desire for growth. They saw factory expansion as an essential ingredient for profits. With each new facility the company erected, a host of new working families made their way to Dalton. The number of millhands working for Crown increased from 110 in 1890 to more than 640 by the end of

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