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Laurel in Prince George's County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Laurel Factory:

Prince Georges County's Only Mill Town

 

—Riverfront Park Heritage & Nature Trail —

 
Laurel Factory: Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, November 15, 2014
1. Laurel Factory: Marker
Inscription. Laurel was originally called Laurel Factory after the cotton mill that stood where the Laurel Pool is today.

The Laurel mill originally manufactured cotton duck, used for sails, tents and the Conestoga Wagons that settled the west. Cotton ramie and window shades were produced there in later years.

Laurel's Main Street evolved as a conduit for importing raw materials and for hauling manufactured goods by wagon from the mill to the railroad station where they traveled to Baltimore.

Mills were Laurel's primary employer for many years but mill workers' jobs were often uncertain. The Laurel Mill burned and was rebuilt. It changed hands frequently, opened, went bankrupt, and reopened again. The mill closed for good in 1929.

During WWI, soldiers were housed in the mill and trained in nearby "Camp Laurel" before going to war.
 
Erected by City of Laurel Dpartment of Parks and Recreation.
 
Location. 39° 6.58′ N, 76° 51.448′ W. Marker is in Laurel, Maryland, in Prince George's County. Marker is at the intersection of Main Street and 9th Street when traveling west on Main Street. Touch for map. At the Laurel Swimming Pool. Marker is at or near this postal address: 901 Main Street, Laurel MD 20707, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers.
Laurel Factory: Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, November 15, 2014
2. Laurel Factory: Marker
At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Laurel Cotton Mill and Dam (here, next to this marker); Laurel Factory: A Mill Town (a few steps from this marker); Casula Point (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Laurel: A Factory Town Bridging Two Counties (about 300 feet away); Laurel Harnessed the River to Power the Cotton Mill (about 300 feet away); Water From the Dam Powered the Cotton Mill (about 500 feet away); Methodism in Laurel (about 500 feet away); The Old Stone Methodist Church (about 600 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Laurel.
 
Categories. Industry & Commerce
 
Laurel Cotton Mill image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, November 15, 2014
3. Laurel Cotton Mill
Laurel Mill in the 1870s.
Close-up of photo on marker
Workers circa 1914-1917 in front of the Laurel mill. image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, November 15, 2014
4. Workers circa 1914-1917 in front of the Laurel mill.
Operated by the Mount Vernon-Woodberry Cotton Duck Company, they produced cotton ramie. Note the mill dam visible on the left. The Laurel Pool now occupies the site.
Close-up of photo on marker
Baltimore American, June 22, 1855 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, November 15, 2014
5. Baltimore American, June 22, 1855
Destruction of the Laurel Cotton Factory.
The Laurel Cotton Factory on the Patuxent River, in Prince George's County was totally destroyed by fire on Wednesday afternoon...The whole of the machinery was destroyed together with all the stock...By this calamity two hundred sixty operators were thrown out of employment and must so remain until the factory is rebuilt...
Close-up of photo on marker
Baltimore Sun August 14, 1877 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, November 15, 2014
6. Baltimore Sun August 14, 1877
Resumption of Work at Laurel Mills—
Work for several Hundred Operatives, &c.


The Laurel Mills in Prince George's county Md., on the Washington Branch, Baltimore and Ohio railroad, twenty-two miles from Baltimore, will commence work to-day under the company recently organized, with Mr. James A. Gary president. The factory bell will ring out at six o' clock A. M. for the first time since the suspension last April. A supply of raw cotton was sent down from Baltimore last Sunday, and yesterday was being conveyed to the mill. Gen. G.H. Nye who has engaged in the business of manufacturing cotton for over thirty years, and for several years past near Montreal, Canada, has been placed in charge as superintendent....

...station, and certainty of a renewed business was glad tidings to the operatives so long out of work, and to the merchants and shopkeepers who have felt the loss of their trade. Many of the working people have been in great need during the halt time. but aid has been kindly furnished them from various sources, and few or no cases of actual suffering for food have been reported. In a day or two, which may be re...
Close-up of photo on marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on November 22, 2014, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. This page has been viewed 210 times since then and 24 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on November 22, 2014, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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