The Buena Vista Factory, Hutchings Factory, Lester Factory
· First Textile Mill in Greenville County.
· Site used for textile manufacturing from 1820-1935.
· The mortared stone dam spanning the Enoree River was built with six sluice gates in the 1880's.Rocky Field Creek runs from the North to the South through the mill site.
· The first mill was built in 1820 by Rev. Tomas Hutchings from Rhode Island.
· He bought the land from Charles Dean, who on November 30, 1798 was given a land grant by the state of South Carolina for 167 acres on the North side of the Enoree River, Dean sold to Hutchings on February 29, 1820.
· The Buena Vista Cotton Factory, or Hutchings Factory, had 144 spindles and burned in 1825.
· Before 1830, Josiah Kilgore and Phillip C. Lester took over the title. Lester bought out Kilgore and operated the Lester Factory. It was destroyed by fire in 1853.
· It is believed that the Mill Office was constructed in 1870.
· On February 2, 1880, Pelham Manufactruing Co. purchased 303.5 acres, cotton factory, grist mill and other property of George W. Lester at a public auction held by US Marshall Robert W. Wallace for $13,400.
· Lester and Brothers had declared bankruptcy primarily due to not modernizing as other local cotton mills did.
· In 1882, the name was changed to the Pelham Factory at Lester's Bridge. It had 60 employees and 2,032 spindles.
· The current dam was built between 1880 and 1890.
· The 1890 flood damaged the mill office and it was moved to the east side of Highway 14.
· By 1907, there were 300 employees, 10,752 spindles and 4, 359 bales of cotton were processed.
· In 1919, the mill supplemented it's water powered machinery with steam-powered machinery.
· In 1935, there were 11,112 spindles when the mill closed.
· The vacant mill was destroyed by in 1943.
· The Mill Office became the Pelham Post office from the late 1930's until 1996.
· On September 11, 2002, the Mill Office was moved to it's current site to make room for the enlargement of Highway 14.