Mill Village home and Mill today.
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The Edenton Cotton Mill Museum of History is open every Saturday from 11am to 2pm (and also by appointment for group visits). The exhibits include artifacts, tools, journals, documents, and photos from the very beginning of the Mill up to the current time of its restoration as a thriving community. The photos in this gallery show the exhibit space as it was remodeled in early 2015. (Will open in a new window.)
Village life revolved around the Mill — for example, with children bringing lunch to their parents on workdays, and with baseball and other activities taking place on the Mill-owned ball field. But village life was also in most ways just like any other close-knit neighborhood — church baptisms, backyard garden work, kids playing, neighbors helping neighbors. This gallery shows both candid and posed moments through the years.
Work in the Edenton Cotton Mill could be hard, hot, and dusty, but the workers were grateful that they were able to walk to work from their nearby homes in the Mill Village and work with their neighbors and friends. At the Mill they were guaranteed a paycheck at the end of the week — steady work and steady pay, which was something that the agricultural way of life that many of them came from did not provide. This gallery shows what work was like in the Mill through the years.
Before and After
During the Mill Village heyday, its homes, while modest in style and size, were well kept by the residents. However, by the mid-1990s, when the Mill closed, many of the homes lay abandoned and in disrepair. It was this sad and somewhat empty neighborhood that was donated to Preservation North Carolina by Unifi Inc, the last owner of the Mill. This gallery shows some “Before-and-After” views of the Mill Village — “Before” in the mid-1990s, and “After” today.
Mill Village Memories
Here's a slideshow with music that captures the memories of the bygone era in the Mill and its Village community. It includes photos of residents and workers as well as scenes in the Mill and the neighborhood. A YouTube video for you to savor.