Manufactures of Fannin County, Texas

 

This branch of industry in Fannin County, is yet in its infancy, and may be discussed within very narrow limits. Up to date it is confined to flour, wine, cider, whiskey, cigars, furniture, wagons and buggies, and lumber.

M. S. Fisher, is the most extensive flour manufacturer in North Texas. He operates two large flouring mills, one of which is situated in east Bonham, and the other, about two miles south on Bois d'arc creek. The mill at Bonham is used more for neighborhood purposes, and its capacity is only twenty-five barrels a day, but the one on Bois d' are is the most extensive and complete machinery of the kind in the state. The engine is one hundred horsepower, and the machinery for manufacturing flour is the "Hungarian System" with the latest improvements. The building is five stories high and every floor is a mass of machinery that is like so much Greek -to the uninitiated. This factory has 'a capacity of two hundred barrels a day. Three grades of flour are manufactured, the most inferior of which will class, good family flour. The other grades are superior, and all of them find ready sale in the local and other markets. Mr. Fisher supplies the local demand, and averages an car-load per day for other markets. He supplies all the towns on this division of the T. & P. Road, from Texarkana to Sherman. He gives as good or better grade of flour, than foreign factories, freight is saved, and his prices by the carload are less than other dealers can offer.

The value of the "Roller Mills" will probably reach $25,000.00, and take the lead of the manufacturing interest in Fannin County.

There are other flouring mills in the county, but they are used only for neighborhood purposes..
M. C. Fletcher, of Bonham, is perhaps the most extensive grape grower, and wine and cider manufacturer. Ms vineyard is situated in the western portion of Bonham. His wines are excel-lent, and he has no trouble in disposing of them. Making vineyards, is becoming popular in the county and it is likely that the manufacture of wine will one day be a leading industry, to which the lighter nature of the soil, in the northern portion of the county, is peculiarly adapted.
The only distillery in the county is situated about thirteen miles north of Bonham, and is operated by McRea & Sons.

Messrs. Taylor, Hawkins and Taylor are the only manufacturers of cigars. This factory is situated in Bonham, works from four to six hands, and turns out an average of 1,000 cigars a day. Their goods are favorably received, and supply the local demand besides filling a good many foreign orders.

W. C. Grace is the proprietor of the Bonham Wood Shops and Furniture Factory. The mills are situated in south Bonham, making quite an addition to that portion of the city.

On the East side of the square in Bonham, is situated the wagon and buggy manufactory, owned and operated by Mr. V. A. Ewing. It is here that the everlasting bois d'arc wagons and buggies are made. The work turned out of this factory is inferior to none in the South. Skilled workmen are employed, and the best of material used. A wagon or a buggy made out of bois d'arc never gives way. The iron may rust and rot, but the wood, never! Of course the factory is not confined to the use of this timber, but it is made a specialty.

The manufacture of lumber is the only restricted branch of the manufacturing interests in the county. There is plenty of timber along the creek bottoms, especially on what is known as timber creek, which runs between Bonham and the river on the north, but none of this timber is the kind used in building. There is absolutely no pinery in the county. The manufacture of bois d'arc lumber is destined to become the paying part of lumber manufacturing. Besides its durability, it is susceptible of the highest polish, and when nicely finished and polished, paint and varnish are dull compared with it. It grows to an immense size in this county, with a tall clean trunk, out of which lumber is made and used for the foundations of stone and brick buildings. In 1885, an old wall was removed, for some purpose, which had been built for 25 years; four feet under the surface, the bois d'arc slabs were found, perfectly intact, not even a worm hole, or a rotten speck to be found.

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