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Cotton warehouses begin opening in Bulloch in 1909

Note: The following is one of a series of columns looking at the origins and growth of the agriculture industry in Southeast Georgia and Bulloch County.

The Statesboro News issue of Sept. 9, 1909 announced that the “Farmers’ Co-operative Union Warehouse Company of Statesboro, Ga” was ready for business.

They would pay “ten cents per bale for weighing and shipping and thirty cents per bale for storing upland and forty cents for storing sea island cotton per month. We solicit your patronage.”

Then, the Bulloch Times and Statesboro News issue of Nov. 25, 1920 announced the opening of a new cotton warehouse. It reported that Parker, Hooks, and Foy had set up their new warehouse.

“Having placed the building in perfect repair, the undersigned announce that we are receiving cotton for storage” at the W.T. Smith Livery Feed and Stables business, where “we can handle as much as 1,000 bales.”

They added that “We issue receipts and handle your cotton on the same terms and with the same safety as other warehouses, and invite the patronage of the public.”

The Bulloch Times and Statesboro News issue of Dec. 9, 1920 reported that it will be of interest to the farmers of the county to know that Messrs. F.C. Parker, H.F. Hook and I.M. Foy are open for business.

They declared, as “owners of the W. T. Smith old stables, have made ample arrangements for the proper storage and handling of cotton, and invite the public patronage. “

Continuing, they said we “have facilities for handling a thousand or more bales upon the same terms and with the same safety as the old established warehouses, issuing receipts and insuring against loss.”

They added that “This convenience to the farmers was made necessary by the crowded condition of the Farmers Union Warehouse of the H. Z. Smith Trading Company which has been taxed beyond its capacity.”

Decades later, the Bulloch Times of Aug. 9, 1951 advertised that “The Farmers Union Warehouse in Statesboro Offers 45c Per Pound for the first Bale of 1951 Crop Cotton Grown in Bulloch and Delivered Here.”

A Farmers Alliance enterprise, “The Farmers Union Warehouse is equipped to handle your cotton quickly and efficiently. There are always buyers on hand to bid on your cotton and assure you top prices.”

The owners added, “If you wish to place your cotton in the Government Loan; the Farmers Union Warehouse is equipped to make out your loans and issue you a check for your cotton directly from the Warehouse.”

And, “this procedure eliminates any delay in the transaction. The Farmers Union Warehouse is operated by H. Z. Smith & Sons and they are always glad to aid you in any way to assure you top returns for your cotton.”

Roger Allen is a local lover of history. Allen provides a brief look each week at the area’s past. E-mail Roger at [email protected]

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