Arthur Hutcheson
October 24, 1818 - April 5, 1895

 

Arthur Hutcheson was born in 1819 in Ireland. He was Banning's third owner and is credited with bring the most growth and prosperity to the rural community. He purchased the mill in 1878, renaming it Hutcheson's Manufacturing Company, and wasted no time making improvements to the mill and community. He constructed two pulp mills, one grist mill, two dams, and rebuilt the old paper mill along Snake Creek. Mr. Hutcheson also purchased new equipment for textile mill, installed incandescent lighting, and constructed mill homes, a school and church. Known as a paternalist, he hired a doctor and teachers to care for and educate his work force.

The photograph to the right and below shows Arthur Hutcheson and an unidentified man, woman, and African American girl (in yard near fence). It is possible this is the house Mr. Hutcheson resided after he purchased the mill in 1878.

It is possible the man standing in the doorway is either Joseph Hutcheson, his cousin or J. R. Lasseter, the mill's head superintendent. Both men were executors of his will. The woman could very well be his niece and homemaker, Sophie Latimer

Below is an excerpt from the Carroll Free Press, April 12, 1895, reporting on the death of Arthur Hutcheson.

 

Death of Hon. A. Hutcheson

"News was received here on last Friday morning that the Hon. Arthur Hutcheson of Banning had died at 6 o'clock that morning at his home in that place. As was stated in the Free Press last week, he had been quite ill for several weeks but no one thought that the end was so near. His death was a shock to quite a number of people here who were not aware of his extreme illness.

Mr. Hutcheson was at the time of his death seventy six years old, having come to this country from Ireland in 1836, when he was seventeen years of age.

He landed upon the shores of America a penniless boy. He came directly to the home of his brother, Mr. James Hutcheson, the father of Mr. Joseph Hutcheson, our country man, who had paid his fare from Ireland. Mr. James Hutcheson was then living in the corner of Coweta county, near Cambell, and also near Hutchesons ferry which he owned. In connection with his farming operations he conducted a country store. Arthur, after working a year or two on the farm, was placed in the store, where he developed quite a talent for trading. This was the beginning of his remarkable career as a business man, which placed him among the foremost merchants and businessmen of western Georgia.

Mr. Hutcheson was no common man. He was not only big bodied, but he was also big brained. He was well informed upon the current events of the world and kept abreast with the times. He was a close observer of the remarkable age in which we live and his comments upon passing events and the drift towards an ominous and portentous future, were quite interesting. He believed we were on the verge of an epoch in history.

As a business man, his strong common sense and knowledge of men, were remarkable. Everything he touched prospered. Although without experience in manufacturing enterprises, a few years ago, he purchased with other parties, the cotton mill in the eastern part of this county. Such was the confidence of his associates in his business sagacity, that he was placed in charge, though as already stated, without experience. The factory though in bad shape when it was purchased, we have no doubt is the best paying investment of its kind in the state today. Its stock is said to be worth $175 on the share of $100. A paper mill near by was afterwards purchased by the company and to this was added two pulp mills and too has proved to be a success under his management.

 

Mr. Hutcheson's estate is estimated to be worth, by those who were close to him, $150,000. As he was never married, he leaves the bulk of his property to his cousin, Mr. Joseph Hutcheson of this county, and his nieces, Miss Sophie Latimer, who lived with him, and Miss Margaret Latimer, who lives in Tennessee.

Mr. Hutcheson was a member of the M. E. church and a few years ago he bought the Whitesburg High School building and gave it to the North Georgia Conference, who placed the Rev. G. W. Griner in charge of it. He afterwards made considerable additions to it and it is now one of the best school buildings and schools of the county. The conference gave it the name of Hutcheson Institute in honor of Mr. Hutcheson's munificence.

Mr. Hutcheson's remains were interred at the Hutcheson grave yard, on the old Hutcheson homestead, just across the Chattahoochee river on Saturday evening at 3 o'clock p.m. There was a large number of people present to pay the last sad tribute to the deceased. The funeral exercised were conducted by Rev. J. S. Bryan, assisted by Revs. Griner and Crawley".

Arthur Hutcheson's tombstone.

 

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