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|Size||0.5 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 250 items)|
|Abstract||Robert Obediah Huffman (1890-1978) was a furniture and hosiery manufacturer, business and civic leader, and philanthropist of Morganton, Burke County, N.C. The collection consists of four scrapbooks, biographical material, and speeches of Robert O. Huffman. The scrapbooks and biographical material include newspaper clippings, correspondence, photographs, and printed material that document awards and honors Huffman received and his business accomplishments, civic activities and community, industry, and political contacts, chiefly during the 1950s and 1960s. The speeches were given at commencements and at meetings of the Newcomen Society and industry groups.|
|Creator||Huffman, Robert O.|
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Robert Obediah Huffman (1890-1978) was born in Morganton, Burke County, N.C. He graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1913 and immediately went to work for one of the family businesses, Drexel Knitting Mills. Under his leadership the business grew to include the Morganton Full Fashion Hosiery Mills and the Huffman Hosiery Mill. In 1935, he succeeded his brother, Frank O. Huffman, as president of the family's other business, Drexel Furniture Company. The furniture business eventually became known as Drexel Enterprises, Inc., which included the original Drexel Furniture Company, Morganton Furniture Company, Heritage Furniture Company, and Southern Desk Company. Huffman served as president of Drexel Enterprises, but he also remained active in hosiery manufacturing at the same time.
During and after World War II, Huffman served in the Office of Production Management, the War Production Board, the Office of Price Administration, and the Office of Price Stabilization. His business acumen also was tapped by the boards of many companies and organizations, including Liberty Mutual Insurance Company, Jefferson Standard Life Insurance Company, First National Bank of Morganton, the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, the National Association of Manufacturers, and the Southern Furniture Manufacturers Association, among others.
Huffman was a noted civic leader and philanthropist. He was a deacon and active member of First Baptist Church in Morganton, and served as a trustee of the Morganton City School Board, Mars Hill College, and Grace Hospital of Morganton, as president of the Burke Farmers Cooperative Dairy, and as mayor of Morganton. He received many honors during his lifetime, including an honorary degree from the University of North Carolina in 1954 and "Man of the Year for 1955" from Morganton, N.C.
Huffman married Pearl Trogdon of Winston Salem, N.C., in 1915, and with her had three daughters.Back to Top
The collection consists of four scrapbooks, biographical material, and speeches of Robert O. Huffman (1890-1978), a hosiery and furniture manufacturer, business and civic leader, and philanthropist of Morganton, Burke County, N.C. The scrapbooks and biographical material include newspaper clippings, correspondence, photographs, and printed material that document awards and honors Huffman received, his business accomplishments, civic activities, and community, industry, and political contacts, chiefly during the 1950s and 1960s. The speeches were given at commencements and at meetings of the Newcomen Society and industry groups.Back to Top
Processed by: Nancy Kaiser, November 2005
Encoded by: Nancy Kaiser, November 2005Back to Top