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Anniston: 1914

Anniston: 1914

October 1914. Anniston, Alabama. "Housing conditions at Adelaide Mill. The village is run down and greatly in need of sanitary improvements." Photograph and caption by Lewis Wickes Hine. View full size.


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Company Town

Anniston was begun in 1872 by Samuel Noble (of England) and Gen. Daniel Tyler (of Connecticut) as a company town supporting Woodstock Iron Co. Incorporated through the state of Alabama in 1879, the town was opened to the public on July 3, 1883, with great fanfare. The mill mentioned here made cotton yarn — representing a diversification of industry as well as employment for the laboring class women — and was built on the site of a former Woodstock furnace. It's deplorable that sanitary improvements were noted as lacking, since the city had then and still has a bountiful source of fresh water in the form of a great spring. The city is currently developing its mostly-abandoned Army base and an observance of its 125th year of public existence is planned for this summer. (The local library is a repository for glass-negative images detailing life and residents in the city's middle decades.)

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