Chronological History

(compiled by Don Roper, Piedmont, SC)

1746: David Garrison Born.

1770: Pearl Springs School Organized on Shiloh Church Road.

1790: David Garrison lives in Greenville County

1822: Henry Pinckney Hammett born in Laurens County.

1843: Grist mill and log cabin built at Garrison Shoals.

1856: Grove Station Baptist Church organized.

Dec. 26, 1848: Tea planted on Golden Grove Tea Plantation by Junius Smith.

July 4, 1851: “Now I have before me a pot of fresh tea from my own plantation, the first I have enjoyed,” Junius Smith says.

Dec. 23, 1852: Junius Smith attacked at his home in Grove Station, seriously injured.

Jan. 25, 1853: Junius Smith dies as a result of his injuries.

1860: Shiloh Mehtodist Church organized.

1862: Garrison Shoals property bought by William Bates and Co.

1865: Shiloh Methodist Church used as a school, first teacher was Robert King. April 30, 1873: Piedmont Manufacturing Company organized at the Court House in Greenville. On motion, it was “Resolved that the station on the Greenville and Columbia Railroad and the village be called Piedmont.” Henry P. Hammett, elected president.

Feb. 13, 1874: Corporation known as Piedmont Manufacturing Company chartered by the State of South Carolina.

May 13, 1874: Stockholders adopted the charter as issued by the State of South Carolina. Oct. 3, 1874: Cornerstone Laid.

Oct. 15, 1874: Cornerstone Maliciously torn open and some items stolen. Resealed.

1875 & 1876: The first mill building was constructed on the Greenville County side of the Saluda River.

Jan., 1876: First Sunday School organized.

March 15, 1876: Water turned on for first time. First bale of cotton opened by Mr. W.J. McElreath and his son; McElreath Street named for this family. First spinning machinery started up. First bale of cotton used in mill bought from Silas F. Trowbridge of Grove Station. He bought the first bale of cloth, a 36” sheeting which was sold in his store.

March 20, 1876: J.W. Rounds, superintendent.

April 1876: First cloth manufactured in Piedmont No. 1.

July 1, 1876: Mill considered in full operation.

Nov. 4, 1876: Piedmont Methodist Church organized by the Rev. R.R. Dagnall, Pastor.

Feb. 24, 1877: James Champion Osteen born.

1877: Royal Kallock, superintendent.

1878: C.A. Davenport, superintendent.

1879: A.R. Steele, superintendent.

1879: Union Church building built by the mill.

Dec. 29, 1879: Piedmont First Baptist Church organized, meeting in the old plantation house on Hotel Hill.

1880: Mill Building No. 2 built in Greenville County.

1880: First school building built and teacher hired. The first school had 80 students enrolled. Wooden school was constructed near Union Church.

May 18, 1880: Piedmont Presbyterian Church organized, the Rev. C.L. Stewart was pastor.

1880: First cloth exported to China.

1883: J.P. Iler, superintendent.

1888: Mill Building No. 3 built in Anderson County.

1890: Waco School built, first teacher was John Watson.

June 22, 1890: Land given to the Baptists for a church on Hotel Hill near the reservoir.

July 26, 1891: Piedmont First Baptist church building dedicated

May 8, 1891: H.P. Hammett dies.

May 13, 1891 – June 19, 1891: R.L. McCaughrin served as president.

June 19, 1891: J.L. Orr elected president.

July 26, 1891: Piedmont First Baptist Church building dedicated, pastor was T.M. Galphin. 1891: W.F. Walker, superintendent.

May 11, 1892: Land deeded to Piedmont Methodist Church, church built on Hotel Hill.

Sept. 1, 1893: Lula Timmerman dies. Mother later sees face of Christ in coffee grounds settled in saucer. Mr. A.S. Rowell had picture made which circulated nationwide.

1893: Piedmont Presbyterian Church built in Anderson County.

1894 (Spring): Piedmont Presbyterian Church dedicated by Dr. J. Lowery.

1895: Mill Building No. 4 built in Greenville County on Academy Street.

1900: Wooden school for grammar grades built in Anderson County.

Dec. 3, 1903: Ten wooden buildings in downtown burn.

Feb. 26, 1905: Col. James L. Orr dies.

Feb. 1, 1904: S.T. Buchanan, superintendent.

March 11, 1905: William E. Beattie elected president.

1915: Waco and Shiloh schools merged and new school built at Rock Hill, first principal was Jack Ballard.

1918: “The Bridge,” a monthly paper is started with Mr. A.S. Rowell as editor. Subscription price “Cross the bridge and help each other,” was distributed free to all homes in the village.

Jan., 1919: Installation of electricity completed in the houses and buildings of the town.

1920: Rock Hill School enlarged, first principal was Miss Ollie Simpson, later Mrs. Homer Long.

1920: Piedmont High School built on church Street (brick).

1921: Southern Textile Basketball Tournament started in Greenville.

1922: Mr. A.S. Rowell dies, buried in Rose Hill Cemetery. Mr. Doggett named editor of “Bridge.”

May 9, 1923: William E. Beattie resigns as president of Piedmont Manufacturing Company. S.M. Beattie Elected to succeed his father.

1925: “Bridge” ceases publication.

1927: Piedmont Manufacturing Company sold to the Beattie family by the heirs of H.P. Hammett.

Sept. 18, 1931: Pay rates: Sweeper, $.12/hour; Fixer: $.31/hour.

March, 1933: Piedmont High School wins State basketball Championship in Class B.

June 26, 1933: S.T. Buchanan dies.

July 1, 1933: Carl Moore, superintendent.

June, 1935: Ben Underwood, superintendent.

March, 1936: Piedmont High School wins Class “B” state title.

1936: W.E. Beattie Memorial Grammar School built on Academy street.

1938: New Brick Rock Hill School built by W.P.A.

Dec. 1, 1938: V.J. Lipscomb, superintendent.

June 6, 1938: New grandstand at Buchanan Field holds first game, Appleton wins 6-2.

1946: S.M. Beattie steps down as president when mill is sold.

1946: Piedmont Manufacturing Co. sold to J.P. Stevens and Co., Inc.

Jan. 1, 1949: V.J. Lipscomb, manager; J. Harvey Clevland Jr., superintendent.

March 1950: Piedmont High School wins Class “B” state basketball championship with a record of 28-0.

June 21, 1950: V.J. Lipscomb dies.

June, 1950: R. Carter Henry, manager.

1950: Houses sold to employees.

1950; US Census shows 5,000 people living in Piedmont.

Feb, 15, 1953: Ground breaking held for new Grove Station Baptist Church.

June 7, 1953: New Grove Station Baptist Church dedicated, Dr. Furman S. Rivers, speaker.

1954: Paul W. Nipper Jr., superintendent.

1958: Paul W. Nipper Jr., manager.

March, 1958: Piedmont Plant wins Class “A” Championship in Southern Textile Basketball Tournament for the first time; last year held in old textile hall.

1958: V.T. Jenkins, superintendent.

March, 1959: Piedmont Plant wins Class “A” Title again, first year held in new Greenville Memorial Auditorium.

1959: Ed H. Stall, manager

Dec. 14, 1962: James Champion Osteen dies

1962: Piedmont High School discontinued, changed to Jr. High.

1962: W.E. Beattie School closed.

1962: “The Saluda Valley Record,” a weekly paper starts publishing.

Aug. 12, 1963: First dirt moved at site of Estes Plant, eventually over 600,000 cubic yards were moved.

Sept. 5, 1963: First concrete poured at Estes Plant, over 12,500 cubic yards were poured. Over 2,000,000 brick were used.

Sept. 23, 1963: First steel erection begun at Estes Plant, weighing over 980 tons.

Oct. 15, 1963: Roof installation started at Estes Plant.

Oct. 16, 1963: Concrete floors started at Estes.

March 1, 1964: First loom started up at Estes.

June 13, 1964: Estes open house for other Stevens plants.

June 16, 1964: Open House and dedication ceremonies held at Estes Plant. Final cost over $6,000,000.

June 20, 1964: Estes Open House for the public.

1964: J.P. Stevens started rug plant in old Piedmont No. 1, renamed as Maples Plant No. 2.

1965; Estes Plant named a Top Ten Plant of the United States.

1965: Piedmont Jr. High closes.

1965: “Saluda Valley Record” ceases publication, subscribers receive “The Williamston Journal.”

1966: J.A. Copple, assistant superintendent.

1966: Maple Plant No. 2 closed. Old mill used to store cloth for Estes and Piedmont.

1967: Old Piedmont High School building burned.

1968: Joe E. Hiott, assistant superintendent.

1971: Pioneer Plant closed.

1971: Estes takes back over the old mill complex on the river in Greenville County. Called Piedmont Warehouse, storing old machinery and cloth. A corduroy cutting unit was installed in the basement of the building.

Dec., 1971: Norman F. Chandler, assistant superintendent.

1973: David J. Worthington, manager.

1974: Jim Herring, Piedmont Plant superintendent.

1976: J.W. Woodc Jr., Piedmont Plant manager; V.T. Jenkins, Estes Plant manager.

1977: Mr. Wood to Estes and Mr. Jenkins to Piedmont.

July 26, 1976: Estes Plant modernized at a cost of $19 million.

1977: E.F. Robbins Jr., manager.

1979: John Paul Poston, manager; Sam Ashley, yarn superintendent; W.A. “Bill” Burch, weaving superintendent; Mr. Wood back to Piedmont.

August, 1981: Corduroy cutting unit closed and moved to Greer.

April, 1981: Piedmont Warehouse closed and building sold to Aquenergy.

1982: S.E. Ball, Piedmont Plant manager.

1983: John T. Tatham, Piedmont Plant manager.

Oct. 26, 1983: Mill Buildings in Greenville County burn.

1984: Sam Ashley, superintendent of manufacturing; H. Gary Rogers, administrative manager.

1984: Jim Vassey, Piedmont Plant manager.

Feb., 1985: Piedmont Plant in Anderson County closed.

1985: First issue of “The Piedmont Informer” is published.

June 30, 1986; Estes Plant sold to Delta Mills Marketing Company, part of Delta Woodside Industries. Edwin Maddrey, Chairman of the Board; Bill Garrett, president of the company; Paul Poston, manager of the plant.

1987: Clarence Gibson, manager.

1990: David Sloan, manager.

April 27, 1990: First Annual Footbridge Festival, sponsored by Bonnes Amies Club.

April 28, 1991: Second Annual Footbridge Festival.