The silk processing industry in the United States was firmly established in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Women insisted on silk stockings as the ultimate luxury for fashionable leg coverings. Silk dresses and scarves were the standard for outerwear. Scarves are still in great demand today as accessories even though nylon hosiery has displaced silk as the preferred leg fashion.
The Klots Throwing Company built a silk throwing mill in the town of Lonaconing, Maryland. The company closed in 1957 and the owners walked away, leaving a completely preserved mill, The Lonaconing Silk Mill
This is an unbelievably well-preserved mill lovingly cared for by Mr. Herbert Crawford for over thirty years. Wayne Firth photographed the mill in 2004. However, all things must be maintained and now the mill has been identified as an “endangered species.” The local newspaper, the Cumberland Times-News carried a story with color photos.
Below, the Klots advertisement which gives mention to the Lonaconing Mill, circa 1915 and coming from the Textile World Journal., from memory it appeared both in 1915 & 16 and although the throwing company was massive in the amount of mills they owned very little advertising appeared in any of the journals. They owned upwards of 14 mills with an annual turnover of $50 Million at the height of their business. Much too large for a website to cover but a very interesting company to at least cover via a timeline.
Courtesy: Peter Metzke
American Raw Silk Inc. NY 1916