If you looked up in the sky in September 1962, instead of a Mercury astronaut, you might see a man sticking a camera outside the window of an airplane and taking some photographs of Chattooga County's industrial might.

riegel mill
The Riegel Textile Mill in Trion is shown in this view facing northwest. Expansion had already eliminated the "Big Friendly."

summerville manufacturing
In this view facing northwest, the Georgia Rug Mill in Summerville is shown with that great Chattooga County natural resource, the chert pit, in the background.   Highway 48 separates the two.  When this photograph was made, chert was commonly used as a paving material for driveways and minor roads.

parking lot
This photograph facing north shows construction of the employee parking lot at Georgia Rug Mill.  On the right, Lyerly Street runs into Highway 48 near the top of the photograph.

two mills
In this westward view, the Summerville cotton mill is shown in the middle, with its parking lot adjacent to Highway 100 and 114. Georgia Rug Mill is in the distance.

A photograph taken a few years later shows Best Manufacturing's Menlo facility.  The park is visible through the trees on the right.

The rest of Best Manufacturing's facility is included in this photograph made in the early 1970s.

The first four photographs were taken by T. Emmett Nunn and are courtesy of Chattooga County Library.  The photographs of Best Manufacturing (photographer unknown) are courtesy of Carol Mitchell.

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Copyright 2012 Greg W. McCollum.  All rights reserved.