From Congregation Town to Industrial City: Culture and Social Change in a Southern Community

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NYU Press, Aug 1, 1997 - History - 320 pages
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In 1835, Winston and Salem was a well-ordered, bucolic, and attractive North Carolina town. A visitor could walk up Main Street from the village square and get a sense of the quiet Moravian community that had settled here. Yet, over the next half-century, this idyllic village was to experience dramatic changes.

The Industrial Revolution calls forth images of great factories, mills, and machinery; yet, the character of the Industrial Revolution went beyond mere changes in modes of production. It meant the radical transformation of economic, social, and political institutions, and the emergence of a new mindset that brought about new ways of thinking and acting.

Here is the illuminating story of Winston-Salem, a community of artisans and small farmers united, as members of a religious congregation, by a single vision of life. Transformed in just a few decades from an agricultural region into the home of the smokestacks and office towers of the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company and the Wachovia Bank and Trust Company, the Moravian community at Salem offers an illuminating illustration of the changes that swept Southern society in the nineteenth century and the concomitant development in these communities of a new ethos. Providing a rich wealth of information about the Winston-Salem community specifically, From Congregation Town to Industrial City also significantly broadens our understanding of how wholesale changes in the nineteenth century South redefined the meaning and experience of community. For, by the end of the century, community had gained an entirely new meaning, namely as a forum in which competing individuals pursued private opportunities and interests.

  

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Contents

TWO The Congregation and a Changing Economy
31
THREE Manufacturing and Community in Salem
60
FOUR Community Culture in Antebellum Salem
94
FIVE The Community at War
121
The Emergence
144
SEVEN Workers in an Industrial Community
172
Drawing the Lines
200
APPENDIX A Rules and Regulations
239
Occupational Classifications for Population
242
Copyright

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About the author (1997)

Michael Shirley is Senior Program Officer at the National Endowment for the Humanities in Washington, DC.

William Garriott is an assistant professor in the Department of Justice Studies at James Madison University.

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