Eden in Rockingham County, North Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
Leaksville Cotton Mill
Cloth for Sale
— Confederate Lifeline —
Former Gov. John Motley Morehead built the Leaksville cotton factory here in 1839. Water from the nearby Smith River rapids powered the stone mill. In May and June 1861, the factory furnished 1,700 yards of osnaburg (a coarse, strong cloth developed in Osnabruck, Germany, by the 16th century) for uniforms for Confederate infantry companies commanded by Capts. John H. Boyd, Thomas T. Slade, and Giles P. Bailey. That winter, the factory also made 500 twelve-man tents for the Confederate forces. Known as Sibley tents for their inventor, Gen. Henry H. Sibley, who sided with the Confederacy, they were also called “bell” tents because of their shape.
When authorities ordered additional cloth from Morehead, he refused even after they threatened to confiscate the mill because sales to civilians were more profitable. After the younger male employees were conscripted into military service, Morehead used older men, women, children, and slaves to manufacture cloth. He finally closed the mill when all able-bodied men under fifty were forced to serve. Morehead later convinced Confederate authorities to detail two older men to work in
After Morehead died in 1866, his son James Turner Morehead managed the Leaksville factory. The original structure burned in 1893, and a brick mill was built on the site using the rock from the old building as a foundation. The mill was demolished in 1992, leaving only the stone foundation.
Erected by North Carolina Civil War Trails.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Industry & Commerce • War, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the North Carolina Civil War Trails series list. A significant historical month for this entry is June 1861.
Location. 36° 30.283′ N, 79° 45.599′ W. Marker is in Eden, North Carolina, in Rockingham County. Marker is on Church Street (State Highway 700) east of Morgan Road, on the left when traveling west. Marker is located in the Governor Morehead Park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Eden NC 27289, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within one mile of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Calcium Carbide (within shouting distance of this marker); Barnett Canal (within shouting distance of this marker); Luther H. Hodges (approx. half a mile away); Annie Eliza Johns (approx. 0.9 miles away); “Land of Eden” (approx. 0.9 miles away); “Land of Eden” (approx. one mile away); a different marker also named Land of Eden (approx. one mile away); “River boat Men: Dan River, 1792 – 1892” (approx. one mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Eden.
More about this marker. The right side of the marker contains a photograph of the “Leaksville cotton mill built in 1839.”
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on February 6, 2013, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 545 times since then and 39 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on February 6, 2013, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey.