Mill Life

[Train Whistle] As industrialization spread, cotton mill workers moved their families from the countryside to urban areas to take advantage of the economic and social conditions the cities provided. Located within walking distance of the mills, were neighborhoods referred to as mill villages. These villages consisted of boarding houses, duplexes, and single-family homes called “shotgun houses,” were furnished by the company. Though convenient for mill workers and their families, mill villages were crated to be most beneficial to company owners, as it kept their workforce both content and dependent on the mills. Life for the average mill worker consisted of 20-hour work days, 6 days a week, leaving Sundays free to attend church service. Because there were no laws prohibiting such, children as young as six were oftentimes employed at the mills, attending school at night in lieu of traditional education.  Harrisburg was one of several Augusta’s mill villages, the entire district was referred to as the Factory Settlement, or West End. [Train Whistle]

Augusta's Story
  1. Paleo-Indians
  2. Stallings Island
  3. The Age of Exploration: The DeSoto Exhibition; 1540
  4. Early Colonial Period; 1685 – 1736
  5. Late Colonial Period
  6. The American Revolution, 1776 - 1783
  7. Antebellum Society
  8. Dave: Enslaved Potter and Poet
  9. Cotton
  10. Civil War; 1861 - 1865
  11. Reconstruction
  12. The Golden Blocks
  13. The Augusta Canal and the Cotton Industry
  14. Petersburg Boat
  15. Industrial History
  16. Mill Life
  17. World War I
  18. The Great Fire of 1916
  19. 1920s
  20. World War II
  21. Savannah River Site
  22. Integrating Augusta
  23. The Augusta Riot
  24. 50s, 60s, 70s, and 80s in Augusta
  25. Augusta and the Late 20th Century to Today
  26. Thank you to our partners