History of Gastonia

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history-of-gastonia

Gastonia is the county seat and the largest city, among all 15 incorporated cities, in Gaston County, North Carolina. It was named after William Gaston, a member of the North Carolina Supreme Court. It received its incorporation in 1877 and was recognized as the county seat in 1909, replacing Dallas. It is the third oldest incorporated city and is where Gastonia Bail Bonds operates.

The city of Gastonia started as a stopping point for trains known as Gastonia Station. It continued to build its importance as transportation conjunction as more railroad lines were built. 

Gastonia and the entire Gaston county remains a historic location for pioneering the textile industry. The city saw a continuation in developing its textile manufacturing companies from steam-powered mills in 1877 to electricity-powered mills in 1904. 

Gastonia continues to experience steady growth with its developed healthcare, education, and government sectors.

The Loray Mill Strike of 1929

One of the most significant labor movements in the United States history took place in Gastonia in 1929. Post World War I paved the way for the establishment of cotton mill plants. The mill companies gave thousands of people new jobs and opportunities. 

The prosperity was short-lived. Company administrations adopted a new system, the stretch-out system, that required weavers to double their work at reduced pay. Some workers reached an all-time low of $5 a week. Their strike demanded better working conditions. It included union recognition, a minimum wage of $20 weekly, and a forty-hour workweek. They also demanded the newly introduced system be abolished. The walkout continued for months. 

It may not have achieved its demands, but it gave labor movements the precedence for national development.

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