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West Georgia Textile Heritage Trail Conference
The University of West Georgia will host a conference for historic preservationists, business people, community leaders and anyone interested in creating the West Georgia Textile Heritage Trail. The conference will be at the Sewell Mill in Bremen, 126 Hamilton Avenue, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The $10 registration fee includes a catered lunch.
To register or for more information contact Dr. Keith S. Hebert, associate professor of history, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The goals of the project are to tell the stories of the communities from Dalton to Columbus who share a rich textile heritage and to draw heritage tourists to the region. UWG will develop a business plan for the trail and an interactive website for users. The project is funded by the Community Foundation of West Georgia and supported by UWG’s College of Arts and Humanities and the Center for Public History.
Speakers from the Georgia Department of Economic Development, Georgia Department of Natural Resources, the Georgia Humanities Council, Three Rivers Regional Commission and UWG will be on hand to discuss how to develop the stories about the textile industry and how to preserve and interpret the historic buildings.
At the conclusion of the conference, Sewell Mill will unveil its new exhibit, "Stitching the Fabric of Community in the West Georgia Region," from 5 to 7 p.m. This permanent exhibit, prepared by students in the public history program at UWG, showcases the history of the apparel industry in the Bremen and Bowdon areas. The public is invited to attend this opening as well as the conference.
Georgia’s textile history meanders throughout the state but it was particularly strong across its western side. Mills from Dalton to Columbus produced cloth, socks, yarn, uniforms, grain sacks, rope, twine, carpets and materials for radial tires in the 19th and 20th centuries. Dalton once boasted it was the "Carpet Capital of the World" and Bremen called itself the “Clothing Capital of the South.”
While some of those factories remain in production, many more are now silent. After the passage of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), many textile-related industries in the region closed or relocated in the 1990s.
Buildings have been abandoned. Communities struggle -- what to do with these ties to the past? – and the structures fall into decay. It doesn’t have to be that way. Mandeville Lofts in Carrollton have been transformed into loft apartments and the Warren Sewell Manufacturing building is an all-purpose event and community center.
|Where||126 Hamilton Ave, Bremen, GA 30110|
|Next on||This event is over.|
|Time||9:00 am–5:00 pm|
|Who to bring||College Students, Moms, Dads, Singles, Teens, Families, Seniors|