Banning Mill
First Floor/Basement

This image was captured from the far corner of the basement. To the left, Snake Creek flows beyond the sunlit windows.
From 1885 to 1889, the first floor housed looms for weaving. Weaving was the final stage in making cloth. It involved the interlacing of the different yarns (warps and fillings) to produce strength, texture, and design throughout the finished product. In 1889, there were seventy-two looms at Banning mill.

In 1895 the twisting process was moved from the fourth floor to the first.

 

 

 

“The principle of twisting illustrated is the same as is used in spinning except that the rolls do no drafting. The purpose of the rolls is to grip the multiple strands of single ply yarn and feed them at a controlled rate. All three rolls turn at the same rate of speed.
The speed of the rolls is adjusted to feed out the yarns at a rate that will give time for the spindle and traveler to insert the desired amount of twisting before it gets past the twisting area which is between the rolls and the bobbin.”
From: The Store of Cotton, by the Bibb Company, 1954.

To the right, the old elevator stands dormant.Once a topic of great conversation, both men and women had their hesitations when riding it; the elevator transported products and equipment between the three floors.
Oral histories recall a time when the first floor, or basement, served as a storage area. In the mid 40s, heavy rain caused a dam above the mill to break, freeing the constrained creek. A strange sight, residents recall hundreds of bales of cotton floating silently down Snake Creek.
The photographs on this page were taken after the restoration process began. Each floor of the mill was gutted in the process. The few pieces of original equipment were removed and stored off-site. For more information on the restoration process, please visit: OJP Architect .