Chronicle Mill: Steeped in History. Built on Pride.
t the peak of the textile boom, 60% of Belmont’s workers were employed by mills. So it’s easy to understand why Chronicle Mill is so deeply interwoven into the fabric of this small, proud North Carolina town. The historic landmark holds memories that stretch back across generations. To those who live here, the Chronicle Mill restoration is more than just another development project – it’s like seeing a family heirloom being rescued and restored.
Named After a Revolutionary War Hero
The mill was founded by Belmont’s textile pioneers, R.L. Stowe, Sr. and Samuel Pinckney Stowe, Sr. Encouraged by the success of other mills in the region, the Stowe brothers saw an opportunity to capitalize on the flourishing textile trade. They named their mill in honor of Major William Chronicle, a Revolutionary War hero who lived near the mill site and led the South Fork Boys in the Battle of Kings Mountain, a turning point in America’s fight for independence.
A Catalyst for Belmont’s Growth
In 1902, the spindles started turning at the new steam-powered Chronicle Mill, quickly transforming Belmont from a rural outpost into a leading textile town. Within a decade, electrical power was introduced to meet growing production demand and the mill was expanded several times during its lifetime. Workers lived right next to the 6.5-acre mill site and many of their children attended Chronicle Mills School.
In the late 20th Century, textile manufacturing jobs in Belmont began disappearing, as they did across the U.S. But Chronicle Mill has remained a vital part of Belmont, even after the last yarn was made here in 2010.