The Oakdale Cotton Mills Project began in 2006 with recognition that the life histories of employees of the Oakdale Cotton Mills of Jamestown should be collected and recorded.

This cotton spinning mill has been in continuous operation since the summer of 1865, and continues today, but only in a small way and with an uncertain future. The project has recorded on film the memories of mill employees and their families, and will soon release a 26 minute DVD, Oakdale Cotton Mills: Close-Knit Neighbors, to complete the major goal of the project.

An addition, a printed pictorial history of the mill will be published by Arcadia Press in 2009. All of the photos, interview transcripts, memorabilia, surveys, documents, and other miscellaneous data collected as part of the project, will be archived at Mendenhall Plantation.

The Historic Jamestown Society is the sponsor for the project, which was originated by Patricia Koehler and Mary Browning. Glenn Deck, the Societys vice president, chairs the project committee. The Society helped to fund it and grants were also obtained from other sources. Filming was done under the direction of Mary M. Dalton, Ph. D., Associate Professor and Director of Undergraduate Studies, Dept. of Communications, Wake Forest University.

Oakdale Cotton Mills has been most generous in allowing access to its plant, its employees and to its business archives of old record books, advertising materials, and photographs.

Click on  to see a short preview of the 30-minute Oakdale Cotton Mills documentary produced by Mary Dalton.

Click on the links below for some old pictures of Oakdale Mill.


Mill with reflection

Henry Hodgin House

Oakdale Tower


Mendenhall Plantation - 603 W Main St - Jamestown, NC 27282

Home | Tours | Contact