UNC Charlotte Special Collections J. Murrey Atkins Library - Special Collections & University Archives

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Textile Mill Supply Company records

 Collection
Identifier: MS0360

Scope and Contents

This collection consists mostly of bound volumes containing incorporation charters, charter amendments, by-laws, and minutes of stock-holders’ and directors’ meetings, beginning with the Textile Mill Supply Company’s incorporation in 1898, and continuing until the sale of the company in 1997. Meetings of either stockholders or corporate directors took place every few months in the early part of its history. Topics of discussion included such things as supply and demand of the textile industry and the equipment needs of that industry, changes to the by-laws, the need for auditors to examine their financial records, the possibility of hiring traveling salesmen, and other routine business matters. Some of the minutes of meetings were typed on loose pages, and glued or stapled into the minute books. Others were handwritten directly in the book, itself. A large number of loose papers and letters were found in each of the bound record books, which have been removed and stored in folders. Some of the minutes (especially those recorded since the 1930s) were typed, and the minutes recorded beginning in 1956 were typed onto pages that could be inserted into binder notebooks. The third minute book fills just a few pages of recorded minutes, ending on May 15, 1958 when the TMSC merged with the Industrial Hardware and Supply Company. Records for the new company, the Industrial and Textile Supply Company, begin in the fourth bound volume, on June 3, 1958. This collection contains very little information on the products and services that the TMSC provided to its customers, nor is there much information on the employees. The only information that we have on the products it sold is found of the company’s letterhead. For that reason, the TMSC records are a better source of information on the culture of corporate stock holders, than the textile and textile service industry.

Dates

  • 1898-1997

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Some material may be copyrighted or restricted. It is the patron's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections.

Biographical / Historical

As cotton cultivation was a staple of Southern agriculture and the Southern economy for so much of its history, the textile industry naturally developed as a major part of the economy in that region. In addition, an adjacent industry in hardware and machinery to supply the textile industry also developed. The Textile Mill Supply Company (TMSC) was incorporated in Charlotte, North Carolina on October 7, 1898, “for the purpose of selling mill supplies, machinery, and general equipment, etc.” W. M. C. Rose, J. J. Farnan, A. J. Crampton, and F. B. Ferris were the initial stockholders, beginning with 250 shares of common stock, valued at $100 per share. Not long after their incorporation, B.D. Heath and W.C. Heath joined the stockholders. Among the first actions of the stockholders was to elect a board of directors, and the directors were made up exclusively of stockholders, with Mr. D. B. Heath serving as its president. In addition, the company needed a place to locate their business, so the directors made arrangements to lease store and office space. They were able to occupy a building recently vacated by George H. Brockenborough, which they rented at a rate of $450 per year. They also hired Miss Mamie L. McLean to serve as their stenographer. The minutes for December 3, 1900, indicate that the president of the TMSC instructed the stock holders to “dispose of their holdings in the Hegemonic Manufacturing Company.” This implies that the TMSC may have been an outgrowth of the Hegemonic Manufacturing Company, though the records in this collection do not provide conclusive evidence. The stock holders of the TMSC were still discussing this issue in the August 1906 meeting. In fact, a controversy arose in October of that year when it came to light that Rufus B. Goff, by then president of the TMSC, also owned stock in the Hegemonic Company, was neglecting his duties as president of the TMSC while still receiving a salary from it. This, charged A. J. Crampton, constituted a breach of trust. Moreover, two stockholders of the TMSC presented Goff with a notification of their intent to remove him from office at the October meeting of the board of directors (a meeting which Goff did not attend). Goff’s removal as president of the TMSC was unanimously approved on October 24, 1906. The controversy concerning Goff’s conflict of interest brought significant changes to the TMSC by-laws, which were revised on February 1, 1907. Following that experience, and the changes that it necessitated, the minutes of meetings for the next several years were much more routine. The most common issues under discussion concerned the value and the number of corporate stocks that the company had issued. In spite of what must have been considerable government contracts for uniforms and other accouterments required of the textile industry, the minutes of the TMSC board of directors made no mention of World War I and its affects on the local economy. At the June 20, 1929 meeting of the Board of Directors, P.L. McMahon suggested that the TMSC establish its own realty company for the purpose of managing the its real property. These details were established and finalized by the end of 1929. The corporate records indicate that by this time the TMSC was located at 1200 South Mint Street, but would later move a block away to 1300 South Mint Street. The stockholders were few in number in the company’s early days, and even by 1938, there were only seven. These were F. W. Glover, R. G. Spratt, J. H. Bobbitt, A. K. Glover, Mrs. May Belle McMahon, Mrs. Alice McMahon Peddicord, and Mrs. Caroline A. Ferris. As with so many corporations, the directors were made up exclusively of those investors who had a financial interest at stake. The stake holders were the stock holders. The records in this collection contain minutes of both the stock holders’ meetings, as well as minutes of the board of director’s meetings. As the stockholders elected themselves to be directors, the minutes of the stock holders’ meetings were usually very brief and were immediately followed by the minutes of the next directors’ meeting. As the authorities governing the company, they, as stock holders, periodically awarded themselves dividends from the profits, usually a certain dollar amount per share. The amount of control that a stockholder exerts over a company depended on the amount of stock the holder owns, and voting in stockholders’ and directors’ meetings was allotted on a per capita basis. One stock holder with 100 shares of stock carries more votes at the meetings than two stock holders with 40 shares each. Stock holders who were absent from meetings would usually send a proxy (written permission to vote) to another stock holder in attendance. The stockholder receiving the proxy would add those shares to his own in the voting process. Many of the records in this collection concern the number of stocks that the TMSC had sold, and who bought them. President Glover died on December 29, 1941, and the minutes for February 16, 1942 say:

The three surviving directors feel keenly the loss of our President, Fred W. Glover, whose death occurred December 29, 1941. His advice and counsel will be sorely missed by us, especially during such trying times.

Though the impact of World War II on the TMSC must have been significant, resulting in much greater business, the only mention of it in the minutes refers to war bonds in October of 1943:

A motion was made by Mrs. Spratt, seconded by Mr. Glover that Mr. J. H. Bobbitt, Pres. be authorized in power to sell and assign the three U.S. Treasury Bonds of the 1943 and 1945 Series.

Another long-time board member, Vice President Spratt, died on June 30, 1945. Otherwise, there seems to have been no noticeable impact of WWII on the TMSC. The prosperity characterizing the American economy after the war became apparent by 1951 in the president’s report at the annual stockholder’s meeting, in June of that year:

I am happy to report that the fiscal year, which ended 5/31/51, has been one of good profits. While there was some acceleration in business activity during May and June 1950, the Korean War gave added impetus to business and our sales were up substantially for most of the year. There has, since April, been some let down in the Textile Industry and perhaps this is more or less general.

The next significant event to take place in the history of this company was in 1958, when the TMSC merged with the Industrial Hardware and Supply Company to form the Industrial and Textile Supply Company. Following that, the TMSC determined by the late 1970s that the TMS Realty Corporation was no longer useful to the TMSC, and the directors decided to dissolve the adjacent realty company in 1978. Another corporate merger took place in 1993, when the Industrial and Textile Supply Company joined with the Manufacturers Supply Company. By this time the economy had been changing in such a way that the American textile industry began facing ever increasing competition from inexpensive foreign textile manufacturers. As this industry steadily declined, the American mills and their supporting companies had to make significant changes in order to survive. The minutes of the shareholders’ meeting for February 26, 1997 state:

The Chairman noted that the meeting had been called for the shareholders to act upon the recommendations that have been made by the Board of Directors in regard to the sale by the corporation of all of its operating assets; the adoption of a plan of dissolution and liquidation and the change of the Corporation’s name. The corporation took this action in order to establish the I and T Holding Company, to buy the Industrial and Textile Supply Company. This is the last action recorded in this collection. Over the course of its century-long history, the TMSC changed, grew, established “adjacent” companies, merged, continued to grew, adapted to changing economic conditions, bought itself out and changed its name. A century after its establishment, it was owned by the I and T Holding Corporation.

Extent

2 Linear Feet

Language

English

Overview

Records (mostly minute books and books of stock certificates) of the Textile Mill Supply Company, the Industrial and Hardware Supply Company, and the Industrial and Textile Supply Company, of Charlotte, NC from 1898 to 1997. The collection also includes records of the TMS Realty Company, whose purpose was to administer the land holdings of its parent company.

Arrangement

This collection is broken down into three series, one for each of the different corporations whose records are contained herein. These are: the Textile Mill Supply Company (and the TMS Realty Company, whose records are a part of the TMSC series), the Industrial Hardware and Supply Company, and the Industrial and Textile Supply Company.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Rufus K. Allison, in 2006.

Related Materials

Springs family papers, 1772-1996.

Processing Information

Processed by Robert A. McInnes, 2006.
Title
Textile Mill Supply Company records
Status
Completed
Author
Robert A. McInnes
Date
2006
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Undetermined
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
English

Repository Details

Part of the Manuscript Collections, J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections and University Archives, UNC Charlotte Repository

Contact:
Atkins Library, UNC Charlotte
9201 University City Blvd
Charlotte 28223 United Stated