The North Carolina Society of Historians (NCSH) has awarded local author Carroll C. Jones a 2019 History Book Award for his latest book, Thomson’s Pulp Mill: Building the Champion Fibre Company at Canton, North Carolina —1905 to 1908.
Thomson’s Pulp Mill is the seventh book that Jones has written and the seventh that has picked up a prestigious award from the NCSH.
“Fresh out of college I went to work for Champion as an engineer, unaware of the wetness that still dripped from behind my ears,” Jones said at the 77th annual gathering of North Carolina historians in Davidson. “My great-grandfather had surveyed the ground upon which the mill was built, my parents had worked there, and now it was my opportunity to help convert wood into pulp and paper.
“During that first year or so, I was able to explore every dark corner of the mill’s vast facilities. Those first impressions of huge timber framing, brick masonry construction, and an ancient steam engine driving a paper machine with pulleys and leather belts remained with me over the coming decades.
“A few years ago, I stumbled upon a rare trove of old photographs made during the period when the original Champion Fibre pulp mill was under construction — between 1905 and 1907,” Jones said. “Upon seeing them, old memories were stoked, and I decided then to use those wonderful pictures to tell the story of the mammoth pulp mill Peter G. Thomson built on the bank of the Pigeon River.”
Carroll’s books are carried at Blue Ridge Books in Waynesville or available at Amazon.com. Copies of Thomson’s Pulp Mill can also be found at the Canton Area Historical Museum and Pigeon River Mercantile store in Canton.
Local author Carroll C. Jones was born and raised in the papermill town of Canton, located in the heart of Western North Carolina’s mountains. He is descended from the Hargrove, Cathey, Shook, Moore and Crymes families, who pioneered Haywood County.